A ten-year histopathological study of generalised lymphadenopathy in India
Background: Lymphadenopathy is a rather common clinical finding in a primary healthcare setting, and may be due to inflammatory lesions and tumours. Correlation between clinical findings and laboratory data is essential in arriving at a diagnosis. This study was undertaken to study the histopathology of generalised lymphadenopathy in India, as well as the demographics of the study population. Method: This study was conducted for a period of 10 years (August 1997-July 2007), of which eight years were retrospective, from August 1997-July 2005, and two years were prospective, from August 2005-July 2007. The source of data for this study was patients seeking medical attention, who, on clinical examination, were found to have generalised lymphadenopathy. A representative node was excised for histopathology. Tissues were routinely processed, stained with haematoxylin and eosin, and examined by means of light microscopy. Results: Of the 244 lymph node biopsies analysed in this study, 75 cases (30.73%) were reactive lymphadenitis, 142 cases (58.19%) showed granulomatous lymphadenitis, one case (0.40%) was Hodgkin’s lymphoma, eight cases (3.27%) were non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, and 18 cases (7.37%) were metastatic malignancy. Conclusion: In this study, the most common cause of generalised lymphadenopathy was granulomatous lymphadenitis, followed by reactive lymphadenitis. Among the neoplastic lesions, metastatic malignancy accounted for most cases.
Keywords: lymphadenopathy, lymph node, lymphadenitis, lymphoma, lymph node biopsy