It is known that a subset of cases of classic Hodgkin lymphoma (CHL) with B-cell–rich nodules (lymphocyte-rich CHL) exhibits morphologic and immunophenotypic features that overlap with nodular lymphocyte-predominant Hodgkin lymphoma (NLPHL), raising diagnostic difficulties that can be resolved in most cases by performing an adequate battery of immunohistochemical studies.


To fully characterize cases of T-cell–rich Hodgkin lymphoma where a specific diagnosis of NLPHL (ie, pattern D) or CHL could not be made even after complete immunophenotypic investigation.


The clinical, immunomorphologic, and molecular (when applicable) presentation of 3 cases of T-cell–rich Hodgkin lymphoma was thoroughly investigated.


These 3 cases harbored lymphocyte-predominant–like and Hodgkin and Reed-Sternberg–like cells that partially expressed B-cell and CHL markers and were negative for Epstein-Barr virus–encoded small RNA, in a T-cell–rich background with residual follicular dendritic cell meshworks; 1 case had frequent and the other 2 cases scant/absent eosinophils and plasma cells. Two patients with advanced-stage (III or IV) disease presented with axillary and supraclavicular lymphadenopathy, respectively, and without B symptoms. These patients underwent NLPHL-like therapeutic management with 6 cycles of R-CHOP (rituximab, cyclophosphamide, doxorubicin hydrochloride [hydroxydaunorubicin], vincristine sulfate [Oncovin], and prednisone) chemotherapy; both are in complete remission 7 years posttherapy. One patient presented with stage I disease involving an internal mammary lymph node without B-symptoms and was treated with surgical excision alone; this patient is also in complete remission 1 year later.


These cases illustrate overlapping features of T-cell–rich NLPHL and CHL with neoplastic cells expressing both B-cell program and CHL markers. This underrecognized overlap has not been fully illustrated in the literature, although it portrays a therapeutic challenge. These neoplasms may deserve in-depth investigation in the future that may bring up diagnostic or theragnostic implications.

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Author notes

The authors have no relevant financial interest in the products or companies described in this article.