Intrathoracic manifestations of Rosai-Dorfman disease

Respir Med. 2010 Sep;104(9):1344-9. doi: 10.1016/j.rmed.2010.03.024. Epub 2010 Apr 24.


Introduction: Rosai-Dorfman Disease (RDD), also known as Sinus Histiocytosis with Massive Lymphadenopathy (SHML), is a rare monocyte/macrophage proliferative disorder of varied biological behavior. Although cutaneous and lymph node involvement are relatively well-described, intrathoracic manifestations of RDD have only occasionally been reported.

Methods: We conducted a retrospective computer-assisted search of the Mayo Clinic record from 1976 to 2005 for patients with histopathologic evidence of RDD on organ biopsy. Clinical characteristics were abstracted from charts and thoracic manifestations recorded. Survival was estimated using the national social security database.

Results: A total of 21 patients were diagnosed with RDD over a period of 30 years; 9 had intrathoracic manifestations (43%). Main pulmonary symptoms included dyspnea and cough. Age at the time of diagnosis, gender, race, smoking history, mortality and time of survival after diagnosis were no different between RDD patients with and without intrathoracic manifestations. The most common radiographic thoracic manifestation was mediastinal lymphadenopathy (6 patients). Cystic change, interstitial lung disease, and airway disease were radiographically evident in 4 patients. Seven patients were treated at some point in the course of their disease, most commonly with oral corticosteroids. At the time of last follow-up 87% were alive, with a median (IQR) time interval since diagnosis of 8 years (4-9.7).

Conclusions: Intrathoracic manifestations of RDD are relatively common and include mediastinal lymphadenopathy, airway disease, pleural effusion, cystic and interstitial lung disease. Although limited in size, this series suggests the prognosis of patients with RDD and intrathoracic manifestations is relatively good.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Female
  • Histiocytosis, Sinus / mortality
  • Histiocytosis, Sinus / pathology*
  • Histiocytosis, Sinus / physiopathology
  • Humans
  • Lung Diseases, Interstitial / mortality
  • Lung Diseases, Interstitial / pathology*
  • Lung Diseases, Interstitial / physiopathology
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Survival Analysis
  • Young Adult