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Mod Pathol. 2002 Oct;15(10):1073-9.

Cerebrospinal fluid involvement in mantle cell lymphoma.

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  • 1Department of Pathology, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan 48109-0602, USA.


Mantle cell lymphoma (MCL) is an aggressive neoplasm that is incurable by standard therapy. Patients often present with high-stage disease (Stages III-IV) and frequently have involvement at multiple extranodal sites. Although the gastrointestinal tract, spleen, lung, pleura, bone marrow, and peripheral blood are among the most commonly involved tissues, MCL may also disseminate to so-called sanctuary sites including the central nervous system. Despite this, current clinical evaluations do not routinely include assessment of the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) for lymphomatous infiltrates at presentation, and moreover, only few authors have specifically examined CSF involvement in MCL. In this study, we reviewed the medical records of 108 patients with MCL seen at three centers over a 5-year period to determine the rate of CSF sampling and the frequency of CSF involvement by MCL. The clinical and cytologic characteristics associated with CSF involvement were also studied. Central nervous system (CNS) signs and/or symptoms prompted CSF sampling in 25/108 patients (23%). Specific radiographic abnormalities were present in 9/25 patients (36%). CSF involvement by MCL was identified in 10 of the 25 CSF-sampled patients (40%) by morphology (3 patients), flow cytometry alone (1 patients), or both (6 patients). The CSF-positive cases included two blastoid variants. The CSF cytology of the nine morphologically positive cases was pleomorphic, and prominent cytoplasmic granules were observed in two cases. The overall rate of CSF involvement by MCL among the cohort was 9%, which is comparable to that reported in other selected studies examining this issue.

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