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Childhood Head and Neck Lymphadenopathy

A Report by a Single Institution (2003-2017)

Indolfi, Paolo, MD; Perrotta, Silverio, MD; Rossi, Francesca, MD; Di Martino, Martina, MD; Pota, Elvira, MD; Di Pinto, Daniela, MD; Gualdiero, Giovanna, MD; Boccieri, Emilia, MD; Indolfi, Cristiana, MD; Casale, Fiorina, MD

Journal of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology: January 2019 - Volume 41 - Issue 1 - p 17–20
doi: 10.1097/MPH.0000000000001273
Original Articles

Actually, there is still no consensus related to diagnostic and management algorithms in case of head and neck lymphadenopathy in children. The aim of our study was to analyze the causes of head and neck lymphadenopathy in children to determine a systematic diagnostic approach. We enrolled all cases of head and neck lymphadenopathy in children under the age of 18 diagnosed at the Unit of Hemato-Oncology, Pediatric Department of University “Luigi Vanvitelli,” Naples, over a 15-year period (January 2003-December 2017). In total, 405 patients (271 males) were enrolled in the study. Thirteen cases due to other causes, were left off the study. Therefore, the study was performed on 392 cases. A total of 220 patients (56.1%) had a history of infection, 66 cases (16.8%) a diagnosis of neoplasia, and 101 (24.9%) cases a diagnosis of reactive inflammatory changes of nonspecific origin. We have observed the following from our study: (1) the acute infections are the most common causes of head and neck lymphadenopathy in the pediatric population; (2) in about a quarter of patients, the lymphadenopathy resulted by nonspecific origin; (3) the supraclavicular nodes should be regarded with a high index of suspicion of malignancy.

Unit of Hematology-Oncology, Pediatric Department of University “L. Vanvitelli”, Naples, Italy

The authors declare no conflict of interest.

Reprints: Paolo Indolfi, MD, Unit of Hematology-Oncology, Pediatric Department of University “L. Vanvitelli”, via L. de Crecchio 2, Napoli 80138, Italia (e-mail: paolo.indolfi@unicampania.it).

Received April 30, 2018

Accepted June 14, 2018

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