Thyroid malt lymphoma in patients with a compressive goiter

Lisa M. Earnest, David S. Cooper, James J. Sciubba, Ralph P. Tufano

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations


Background. Mucosa-associated lymphoid tissue (MALT) lymphomas account for less than 1% of all primary thyroid malignancies. They typically arise as neoplastic transformations within areas of autoimmune thyroiditis. Although they tend to have an indolent course, these lymphomas present a diagnostic challenge requiring a high level of suspicion in patients at increased risk of development. Methods. We retrospectively reviewed 3 cases of primary MALT thyroid lymphoma discovered in patients with a compressive goiter. This represents the experience at a single institution from 1996 to 2005. Hospital and clinic records were reviewed to identify the workup, treatment, and outcome. Results. One of 3 patients underwent preoperative fine-needle aspiration (FNA). All patients underwent total thyroidectomy to relieve compressive symptoms, and the final pathology revealed MALT lymphoma. Two patients subsequently underwent radiation therapy. All patients are alive without evidence of disease recurrence. Conclusions. These cases are notable for the unexpected presentation of MALT lymphoma within a compressive goiter.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)765-770
Number of pages6
JournalHead and Neck
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 2006


  • Compressive goiter
  • MALT
  • Thyroid lymphoma

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Otorhinolaryngology


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