Non‐Hodgkin's lymphoma presenting with spinal epidural involvement

Ron Epelbaum, Nissim Haim, Menachem Ben‐Shahar, Yehudit Ben‐Arie, Moshe Feinsod, Yoram Cohen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

76 Scopus citations


Cord compression was noted at presentation in 10 of 453 (2.2%) previously untreated non‐Hodgkin's lymphoma patients seen at the Northern Israel Oncology Center between 1968 and 1983. A prodromal phase of local back pain occurred in eight patients, persisting up to 1 year, followed by a second phase of rapidly progressive signs of cord compression. Five of the ten patients presented with primary spinal epidural involvement (Stage IE), whereas the others had Stage IIE and IIIE (one patient each) and Stage IV, with bone and bone marrow involvement (three patients). All patients had unfavorable histologic diagnoses, mostly of the intermediate grade malignancy types according to the Working Formulation. The patients were treated by radiotherapy (two patients), chemotherapy (three patients), or both modalities (five patients). Seven of the ten patients achieved complete remission, but four of them have subsequently had relapses (two patients in bone, one in central nervous system, and one in mediastinum). The 5‐year actuarial survival and 3‐year relapse‐free survival were 66% and 32%, respectively. Median survival has not been reached after a mean follow‐up of 34 months. Non‐Hodgkin's lymphoma with spinal epidural involvement at presentation is an aggressive disease. An intensive treatment combining irradiation with chemotherapy, and surgery as needed, is suggested in order to achieve good local response and long‐term survival.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2120-2124
Number of pages5
Issue number9
StatePublished - 1 Jan 1986
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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