Send to

Choose Destination
Br J Dermatol. 2013 Sep;169(3):579-86. doi: 10.1111/bjd.12412.

Blastic plasmacytoid dendritic cell neoplasm: clinical features in 90 patients.

Author information

Department of Dermatology, Cancer Research Center of Lyon, Claude Bernard Lyon 1 University, Hospices Civils de Lyon, Lyon, France.



Blastic plasmacytoid dendritic cell neoplasm (BPDCN) is a rare disease characterized by malignant proliferation of a contingent blastic plasmacytoid dendritic cell. This rare entity is recognized mostly by cutaneous spreading, or not having a leukaemic component. The prognosis is very poor.


To study a large cohort of 90 patients with BPDCN, to define additional symptoms to form a correct diagnosis earlier, and to manage such patients accordingly.


We retrospectively reviewed BPDCN cases registered in the French Study Group on Cutaneous Lymphoma database between November 1995 and January 2012. Ninety patients were studied. Demographic data, clinical presentation, initial staging and outcome were recorded.


The group contained 62 male and 28 female patients (sex ratio 2·2). Their ages ranged from 8 to 103 years at the time of diagnosis (mean 67·2 years). Three major different clinical presentations were identified. Sixty-six patients (73%) presented with nodular lesions only, 11 patients (12%) with 'bruise-like' patches and 13 (14%) with disseminated lesions (patches and nodules). Mucosal lesions were seen in five patients (6%). The median survival in patients with BPDCN was 12 months.


We here distinguish three different clinical presentations of BPDCN. A nodular pattern is a more common feature than the originally reported 'bruise-like' pattern. Despite the fact that BPDCN may initially appear as a localized skin tumour, aggressive management including allogeneic bone marrow transplantation should be considered immediately, as it is currently the only option associated with long-term survival.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Wiley
Loading ...
Support Center