Spinal cord compression in malignant lymphoma. Treatment and results

Cancer. 1976 Mar;37(3):1485-91. doi: 10.1002/1097-0142(197603)37:3<1485::aid-cncr2820370334>3.0.co;2-l.


The natural history, treatment, and results of 73 spinal cord compressions caused by malignant lymphomas are analyzed. It is found that the spinal cord compression caused by malignant lymphomas is generally a late manifestation of the illness, although primary or early involvements are occasionally seen. In our study, reticulum cell sarcoma is the most frequently variety followed by Hodgkin's disease and lymphosarcoma. The dorsal spinal cord is the most frequently involved segment and pain, weakness, and paresthesia are cardinal symptoms. Radiation treatment delivered in the early phase of the compression is commonly successful in reversing the neurologic symptoms and a dose above 2500 rads appears to be optimal for local control of disease. The low incidence of cerivcal cord compression in Hodgkin's disease patients may be related to frequent manifestation and irradiation of the neck nodes in these patients. Early detection of disease in the deep seated areas along the spinal cord and irradiation of these areas may prevent progression of tumor to the epidural space.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Hodgkin Disease / complications*
  • Hodgkin Disease / drug therapy
  • Hodgkin Disease / radiotherapy
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Mechlorethamine
  • Middle Aged
  • Neoplasm Metastasis
  • Spinal Cord Compression / etiology*
  • Spinal Neoplasms / complications*
  • Spinal Neoplasms / drug therapy


  • Mechlorethamine