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J Clin Oncol. 2003 Jul 15;21(14):2740-6.

Intestinal non-Hodgkin's lymphoma: a multicenter prospective clinical study from the German Study Group on Intestinal non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma.

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Department of Medicine I, Universitätsklinikum Benjamin Franklin, Hindenburgdamm 30, D-12200 Berlin, Germany;



Intestinal non-Hodgkin's lymphomas are not well characterized. We therefore studied prospectively their clinical features and response to standardized therapy.


Fifty-six patients with primary intestinal lymphoma were included in a prospective, nonrandomized multicenter study. Lymphoma resection was recommended and staging was performed according to the Ann Arbor classification. Patients were scheduled to receive six cycles of cyclophosphamide, doxorubicin, vincristine, and prednisolone (CHOP) chemotherapy, and at stages EIII to EIV, they received additional involved-field radiotherapy. Corticosteroids were used in patients who could not receive chemotherapy.


Thirty-five patients had intestinal T-cell lymphoma (ITCL), 21 patients had intestinal B-cell lymphoma (IBCL; 18 diffuse large-cell lymphomas, two marginal-cell lymphomas, and one follicle-center lymphoma). Thirty-four patients at stages EI to EII (14 ITCL and 20 IBCL) and nine patients at stages EIII to EIV (all ITCL) received chemotherapy. No patient in stages EIII to EIV received radiotherapy, because death occurred in 12 of 14 patients. Two-year cumulative survival in patients with IBCL was 94% (95% CI, 82% to 100%) and higher than in patients with ITCL (28% [95% CI, 13% to 43%]; P <.0001), even when only stages EI to EII were considered (ITCL, 37.5% [95% CI, 16.5% to 58.5%]; P <.0001). IBCL patients compared with ITCL patients were at lower lymphoma stages (P <.01), had higher Karnofsky status (P <.005), had intestinal perforation less often (P <.05), required emergency operation less often (P <.05), received CHOP (P <.05) more often, and reached complete remission (P <.0005) more frequently.


IBCL patients at stages EI and EII respond well to chemotherapy, but the prognosis and treatment of ITCL patients is unsatisfactory.

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