Large-cell lymphomas: Clinical and prognostic features

Richard S. Stein, John P. Greer, John M. Flexner, John D. Hainsworth, Robert D. Collins, William R. Macon, John B. Cousar

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

28 Scopus citations


We reviewed the clinical and pathologic features in 186 patients with large-cell lymphomas seen at Vanderbilt University Hospital between 1970 and 1986. Ninety-two cases (49%) were large noncleaved-cell lymphoma (LNCCL), 61 cases (33%) were large-cleaved-cell lymphoma (LCCL), 17 cases (9%) were peripheral T-cell lymphoma (PTCL), and 16 cases (9%) were immunoblastic sarcoma of B cells (IBS-B). These subsets of large-cell lymphoma did not differ with respect to median age, distribution by stage, or incidence of bone marrow involvement. Significant differences between groups were noted with regard to male:female ratio, incidence of symptoms, incidence of extranodal disease, and pattern of adenopathy. However, when LCCL was excluded from the analysis, none of these differences were significant. By univariate analysis, age, stage, marrow involvement, extranodal disease, B symptoms, elevated serum lactic dehydrogenase (LDH), and diffuse pattern were unfavorable prognostic features in large-cell lymphoma. However, when cases were stratified by cell of origin, nodular versus diffuse pattern was of no prognostic significance. Modularity was favorable only because 71% of nodular and nodular-diffuse cases were LCCL, while the majority of diffuse cases were LNCCL. Although IBS-B is considered a "high-grade" lymphoma, we found no evidence for inferior survival in these patients compared with LNCCL or LCCL. In fact, survival was better in IBS-B than in LNCCL or LCCL, although this difference was not significant. However, survival was significantly inferior in PTCL (median, 11 months) compared with the other subsets of large-cell lymphoma (median, 46 months; P = .038, log-rank test). Since the association of PTCL and an inferior survival has most often been noted in the context of "second-generation" chemotherapy, we believe that this association may be therapy-dependent and may be minimized by the use of more aggressive chemotherapy regimens.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1370-1379
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Clinical Oncology
Issue number8
StatePublished - 1990

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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