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August 25, 1975

Epithelioid Granulomas in Hodgkin DiseaseA Favorable Prognostic Sign?

Author Affiliations

From the Section of Medical Oncology, Baltimore Cancer Research Center, National Cancer Institute, (Drs. O'Connell, Schimpff, and Wiernik), and the Department of Pathology, US Public Health Service Hospital (Drs. Kirschner and Abt), Baltimore. Dr. O'Connell is now with the Department of Medical Oncology, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn; Dr. Kirschner is now with the Department of Pathology, University of Chicago, Chicago; Dr. Abt is now with the Department of Pathology, Milton S. Hershey Medical School, Hershey, Pa.

JAMA. 1975;233(8):886-889. doi:10.1001/jama.1975.03260080048020

Histologic sections of spleen and liver prepared from tissue obtained during exploratory laparotomy and splenectomy in 91 untreated patients with Hodgkin disease were reviewed to assess the incidence and possible implications of noncaseating, epithelioid, sarcoid-like granulomas. The 17 patients with granulomas and the 74 patients without granulomas did not differ appreciably with respect to pretreatment indexes. All patients were observed for at least 15 months following laparotomy or until the time of death (range, 15 to 67 months; median, 26 months). The 17 patients with granulomas tended to have fewer relapses, longer survival, and lower incidence of subsequent herpes zoster infection compared to the 74 without granulomas.

The presence of epithelioid granulomas in association with Hodgkin disease may reflect a host response to the tumor with favorable prognostic implications.

(JAMA 233:886-889, 1975)