OBJECTIVES: To determine the frequency and pattern of presentation of Hodgkins lymphoma
in cervical lymph node at Liaquat University Hospital, and to see its pathological variants.
STUDY DESIGN: Case series.
STUDY SETTING: Surgical departments of Liaquat University Hospital.
STUDY DURATION: Five years from January 2000 to December 2004.
SAMPLING: Non-probable purposive.
INCLUSION CRITERIA: All patients of cervical lymph node enlargement of more than four weeks
duration irrespective of age and sex.
EXCLUSION CRITERIA: Cervical lymph node less than 1cm.
STUDY VARIABLES: Study variables used were age, sex, symptom, clinical finding, stage and
DATA ANALYSIS: Data analysis was done by using SPSS version 10.
RESULTS: A total of 500 patients with enlarged cervical lymph nodes were studied, amongst
them 40 (8%) patients were diagnosed with Hodgkins lymphoma (32 males and 8 females).
Mean age of 40 patients was 23 years (range 9-44 years). Out of these 40 patients, in 8 (20%) patients
it was difficult to differentiate lymphoma clinically from tuberculosis on clinical examination.
Cervical swelling was the commonest symptom (100%) while fever, night sweats and
weight-loss were present in 45% patients, 55% of patients were in stage III & IV (advance disease).
Mixed cellularity was the commonest histological variant. All 40 patients after diagnosis
and staging were referred to Nuclear Institute of Medical Radiotherapy for further management.
CONCLUSION: Although tuberculous cervical lymph node enlargement is very common, but
Hodgkins lymphoma has a definite possibility of occurrence (8% in our study). Therefore all
patients with enlarged cervical lymph node should not be treated with anti-tuberculosis therapy
on empirical basis. Diagnosis should be confirmed by biopsy, otherwise patients may land up
with advanced stage of Hodgkins lymphoma with poor prognosis.
Key words: Cervical lymphadenopathy, Hodgkins Lymphoma, Biopsy.