Generalized Lymphadenopathy as Presenting Feature of Systemic Lupus Erythematosus: Case Report and Review of the Literature

J Clin Med Res. 2016 Nov;8(11):819-823. doi: 10.14740/jocmr2717w. Epub 2016 Sep 29.


Lymphadenopathy could represent a vast spectrum of etiologies including infectious and non-infectious diseases. Besides proper history taking, physical examination, and laboratory investigations, a tissue diagnosis is often necessary to unmask the cause of generalized lymphadenopathy. Here we present a 23-year-old woman who was admitted for diffuse generalized lymphadenopathy, fatigue, malaise, weight loss, nausea, and bilateral lower extremity edema. She reported a history of seizures as well as stroke 2 years prior with no other medical conditions present. Although malignant and infectious etiologies were initially the primary targets for workup, her history of seizures and stroke remained a dilemma. Extensive workup for malignant and infectious diseases was unrevealing; however, rheumatologic workup was eventually positive for systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE). This case illustrates that extensive generalized diffuse lymphadenopathy may be a presenting feature of SLE and should be considered in the differential diagnosis of patients presenting with diffuse lymphadenopathy and constitutional symptoms.

Keywords: Lymphadenopathy; Seizure; Stroke; Systemic lupus erythematosus.

Publication types

  • Case Reports