Pattern Of Malignant Lymphoma In Libya: Apreliminary Study

Original article


Shad S. Akhtar, Khalida P. Salim, Khalil I. El-Habbash, Sayed F. Hug, Shafik A. Wassef, Ikram Ul-Hug

Al-Fateh University Tripoli, Central Hospital, Libya, and Western General Hospital Scotland, U. K., Scotland

Saudi Med J. 1987 January, 8:53-60


A retrospective study of 148 patients with malignant lymphoma seen in the multidisciplinary Oncology Clinic at Tripoli, during 3 years (1981-1984) was conducted to evaluate the pattern of the disease in Libya. Non Hodgkin’s lymphoma (NHL) was the more common lymphoma (84 cases vs 64, 56.7% vs 43.3%), with a higher median age at presentation (40 years vs 30 years), than Hodgkin’s disease (HD). Though the male to female ratio showed a male preponderance in both types of lymphoma it was higher in HD than NHL (1 .82: 1). Diffuse types constituted 94% of NHL, and the histiocytic lymphocytic (DML) (Rappaport) or mixed small and large cell type (MS&L) (Working Formulation) was the commonest subtype. Thirty-five cases (43%) of NHL had extranodal involvement, with gastrointestinal tract being the most common site involved. In HD, mixed cellularity was the most common type of histopathology, the ratio of nodular sclerosis + lymphocytic predominant to mixed cellularity + lymphocytic depletion being 1: 1 .95. A majority of the patients (92% of HD and 80% of NHL) presented with advanced (stage III or IV) disease. This study reveals that HD in Libya has an aggressive pathology but follows the type 1 pattern, as described in developing countries. NHL on the contrary shows a pattern nearer to the one seen in Oriental countries.

Keywords: Pattern Of Malignant Lymphoma In Libya: Apreliminary Study