Non-Hodgkin's lymphoma of the synovium simulating rheumatoid arthritis

Arthritis Rheum. 1987 Feb;30(2):155-61. doi: 10.1002/art.1780300205.


Skeletal involvement in patients with non-Hodgkin's lymphoma (NHL) is common, although direct involvement of the joints is unusual. We describe 2 adults who presented with features suggestive of a diagnosis of rheumatoid arthritis, but who were found to have diffuse NHL of the synovium. Results of a review of the literature, and assessment of the few similar cases in which NHL presented in the joint, suggest that the lymphoma may mimic either a monarticular or polyarticular synovitis, without lymphadenopathy or hepatosplenomegaly. Radiographic demonstration of associated bone destruction is the best evidence for non-Hodgkin's lymphomatous arthropathy in patients with rheumatic symptoms.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Arthritis, Rheumatoid / diagnosis*
  • Diagnosis, Differential
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Joint Diseases / diagnosis*
  • Joint Diseases / pathology
  • Knee Joint*
  • Lymphoma, Non-Hodgkin / diagnosis*
  • Lymphoma, Non-Hodgkin / pathology
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Synovial Membrane* / pathology