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Histopathological patterns and topographical distribution of Kaposi Sarcoma at Muhimbili National Hospital, Tanzania

Reginald Gervas
Edward Mgaya


Background: Kaposi sarcoma (KS) is derived from endothelial cell lineage; it is caused by Human Herpes Virus-8 (HHV-8) facilitated by immune suppression. KS remains one of the commonest sarcoma seen in Tanzania. The paucity of recent data makes monitoring the disease a challenge. This study describes the Histopathological Patterns and Topographical distribution of Kaposi Sarcoma at Muhimbili National Hospital, a tertiary care hospital in Tanzania.

Methods: A hospital-based retrospective cross-sectional study was done to review biopsies sent to the Central Pathology Laboratory (CPL), Muhimbili National Hospital from 2010 to 2014.

Results: A total of 818 cases representing 1.8 % of all malignancies during the study period were enrolled in the study. The age of patients at diagnosis ranged from 6 months to 94 years old, with the median age being 37 years. Male to female ratio
was 1.4:1.0. Females were younger than males (p < 0.001). The majority of the lesions were in the lower limbs, 352 (64.1%). Nodular KS accounted for 74.5% of all cases.

Conclusion: Kaposi’s sarcoma remains a common malignancy. The patients present late at diagnosis. Early diagnosis and improved treatment protocols remain to be key steps towards reducing the burden of KS.

Keywords: Kaposi's Sarcoma; Histopathological Patterns; Topographical distribution.

Journal Identifiers

eISSN: 1729-0503
print ISSN: 1680-6905