Computed tomography features of primary pulmonary non-Hodgkin's lymphoma

Clin Radiol. 1999 Jul;54(7):438-43. doi: 10.1016/s0009-9260(99)90828-0.


Aim: To characterize computed tomography (CT) features of primary pulmonary lymphoma (PPL).

Methods: The CT films of six patients (five men, one woman; 63.2 +/- 14.5 years) with low grade non-Hodgkins PPL were evaluated for alveolar opacities (lobar consolidation, masses or nodules, and ill-defined consolidations), peribronchial disease or bronchial wall thickening, mediastinal nodes and pleural effusion.

Results: Multilobar bilateral, multilobar unilateral, and unilobar unilateral involvement were present in three, one and two cases respectively. CT features were: ill-defined mainly subpleural consolidations (n = 4), mass-like consolidation (n = 1), lobar consolidation (n = 1), and pleural effusion (n = 1). Minor peribronchial disease was seen in two patients, heterogeneous enhancement in four patients, and CT-angiogram sign in one patient. There were no lymphadenopathy or lung nodules. Although the pleura were inseparable from subpleural disease, pleural enhancement was noted on magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) of a patient with lobar lymphoma.

Conclusion: PPL is characterized by ill-defined alveolar opacities that are usually multifocal. Peribronchial disease, proximal bronchiectasis and positive CT-angiogram sign are ancillary features. MRI may be useful in further evaluation with respect to pleural or chest wall involvement.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Lung Diseases, Interstitial / diagnostic imaging
  • Lung Neoplasms / diagnostic imaging*
  • Lymphoma, Non-Hodgkin / diagnostic imaging*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Tomography, X-Ray Computed*