Hodgkin lymphoma involving extranodal and nodal head and neck sites: Characteristics and outcomes

Puneeth Iyengar, Ali Mazloom, Ferial Shihadeh, Ghina Berjawi, Bouthaina Dabaja

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

40 Scopus citations


BACKGROUND: Most Hodgkin lymphoma (HL) patients present with disease in nodal regions. However, in a small subset, disease develops in unique anatomic sites such as the head and neck area. This study aims to identify the characteristics and outcomes of patients who develop HL involving extranodal and nodal head and neck sites. METHODS: The authors searched The University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center's database for HL patients treated between 1967 and 2007 and included those with HL at head and neck sites. They reviewed the records for site of involvement, pathology, treatment, and survival. RESULTS: The authors identified 39 patients with extranodal and nodal HL of the head and neck. Five patients with lymphocyte predominant HL were excluded. Specifically, 10 of 34 patients had disease in the tonsils, 9 in the nasopharynx, 8 in the thyroid, 3 in the parotid, 2 in the adenoids, and 1 each in Waldeyer's ring and nasal antrum. Median age at diagnosis was 31.5 years, average age at diagnosis was 38 years, and 22 of 34 were male; 23 had stage I or II disease. Pathologically, 14 of 34 had the nodular sclerosis subtype, whereas 15 had mixed cellularity. Twenty-nine of 34 had nodal neck disease at presentation. Five of 34 received chemotherapy alone, 5 received radiation alone, and 24 received combination therapy. Twenty-one of 34 received 39.6 gray of external beam radiation. The most commonly used chemotherapy regimens were ABVD (doxorubicin, bleomycin, vinblastine, and dacarbazine) and MOPP (mechlorethamine, vincristine, procarbazine, and prednisone). At last follow-up, 85% were disease-free. CONCLUSIONS: HL of the head and neck is primarily diagnosed as early stage disease of men and of young to middle-aged individuals. Chemotherapy and primary/adjuvant radiotherapy offer excellent local and systemic control. The extent to which nodal disease is present in the neck does not alter outcomes when combined modality therapy is offered. Despite the unique anatomic location of these lesions, standard HL protocols work effectively to promote disease-free survival.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3825-3829
Number of pages5
Issue number16
StatePublished - Aug 15 2010


  • Chemotherapy
  • External beam radiation
  • Head and neck
  • Hodgkin lymphoma

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


Dive into the research topics of 'Hodgkin lymphoma involving extranodal and nodal head and neck sites: Characteristics and outcomes'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this