Langerhans cell histiocytosis following treatment for testicular cancer. A case report and literature review

Pistamaltzian Nikolaos 1 , Nikolaidi Adamantia 1 , Raftogiannis Maria 1 , Economou Aggelos 1 , Mourtzoukos Spryridon 1 ,  and Athanasiadis Ilias 1
  • 1 2nd Oncology Department, MITERA Hospital, 6 Erythrou Stavrou Street, 151 23 Marousi, Greece


A 35 year old male patient received treatment for testicular cancer of pure seminoma histology. He underwent initially a right inguinal orchiectomy and afterwards he received 3 cycles of BEP chemotherapy, as his imaging studies showed enlarged para-aortic lymph nodes. Five months after completion of chemotherapy treatment, a thoracic CT revealed multiple micronodular lesions in both lungs. The patient was advised about the need of salvage chemotherapy, but he opted to undergo further investigation. A lung lesion biopsy was performed, and histology was compatible with diagnosis of Langerhans cell histiocytosis (LCH).

LCH is quite an unusual clinical entity that affects usually -but not solely- the lungs of young adults. The hallmark of the disease, is the presence of the activated Langerhans cells. As its clinical, laboratory and radiological findings are nonspecific, a transbronchial biopsy is sometimes necessary to establish diagnosis. Treatment is generally symptomatic and reserved for patients with multisystem organ involvement.

LCH’s relationship with cancer is complex and no certain correlation is evident. More troublesome can be its differential diagnosis from a cancer with metastatic spread to the lungs or other affected organs, and although rare, it has to be kept in mind when suspicious signs arise

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