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Ann Oncol. 1995 Jul;6(6):559-65.

Nodular type of lymphocyte predominant Hodgkin's disease. A clinical study of 50 cases.

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  • 1ICRF Department of Medical Oncology, St. Bartholomew's Hospital, London, England, UK.



Lymphocyte predominant Hodgkin's disease (LP-HD), particularly that with a nodular pattern has been suggested to constitute a distinct disorder within the spectrum of Hodgkin's disease, this issue being based on clinical, morphological and immunological observations. Furthermore, the nodular LP-HD (N-LP-HD) has been considered to differ from the diffuse subtype (D-LP-HD), although the data are conflicting. The question addressed in this study was whether the clinical course of N-LP-HD differs from that of the D-LP-HD as well as the other subtypes of Hodgkin's disease.


90 cases diagnosed as LP-HD at St. Bartholomew's Hospital (SBH) were reviewed. The histopathological classification was based on the original Lukes and Butler criteria for classical N-LP-HD. Clinical data were retrieved from case notes and a computer database. Stage was determined by the Ann Arbor criteria. Survival and remission duration analyses were performed for the group of patients with N-LP-HD and compared with an histological control group of patients with the other subtypes of Hodgkin's disease and the cases of LP-HD that have been reclassified.


1. 50/90 cases (56%) originally diagnosed as N-LP-HD qualified as N-LP-HD. No case with the diffuse subtype, could be identified. Twenty-three percent of the cases were reclassified as Mixed Cellularity and 11% as Nodular Sclerosis HD, whilst 10% as non-Hodgkin's lymphomas. 2. The majority of cases (78%) presented with early stage (I + II). Bone marrow and liver involvement were rare. 3. 92% of cases achieved complete remission. Recurrence developed in only 6/46 patients within 5-12 years. A second complete remission was achieved in 5/6 (83%) cases. Further recurrences have not yet occurred. 4. The overall survival of the 50 cases with N-LP-HD was 92% at 4 years and did not differ significantly from the 40 cases that have been reclassified. Remission duration however, was significantly better for the group of N-LP-HD being 81% at 12 years. 5. Second malignancies were common and developed in 6/50 cases (12%) with N-LP-HD within 10-15 years. These included: ALL (1 case), high grade B-NHL (2 cases), squamous cell carcinoma (1 case), glioma (1 case), lung carcinoma (1 case). 6. 12/50 patients died within a period of follow-up, up to 21 years. 1/3 of the deaths was attributed to the development of second malignancy.


The diffuse variant of LP-HD is rare, having not been seen at St. Bartholomew's Hospital during this time period. The 50 cases with N-LP-HD showed a favourable course with presentation at an early stage, good response to treatment, late recurrences and remission duration other than the other subtypes of HD. The latter could be attributable to the early stage at presentation of N-LP-HD, since the remission duration on a matching on stage analysis was superficially better in favour of N-LP-HD (p = 0.06). The indolent course of the disease in combination with the risk of second malignancy cases raises the question whether histology should be taken into consideration in the development of new protocols for HD.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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