Purpose: To report a rare case of extranodal NK/T cell lymphoma (NKTL) and to compare its features with those cases previously reported. Design: Case report, observational and literature review. Methods: Complete ophthalmologic examinations followed by excisional biopsy, histopathologic examination and therapy with radiation and chemotherapy. Main Outcome measures: Evaluation of clinical presenting features and histopathologic diagnosis along with patient outcome. Results: A 22 year old female presented as a referral with right orbital swelling, decreased vision and eye pain for 5 weeks. Subsequent orbital CT and multiple biopsies resulted in a diagnosis of extranodal natural killer (NK)/T cell lymphoma (NKTL). Despite continued chemotherapy and orbital radiation the patient expired within 3 months of diagnosis. To our knowledge, only 8 cases of orbital involvement without nasal mucosal involvement are reported in the literature, the majority in patients of male gender around the fifth decade. Conclusions: Here we present an atypical and aggressive case of extranodal NK/T cell lymphoma presenting in a 22 year old Caucasian female as orbital swelling without evidence of nasal mucosal involvement. It is important to distinguish NKTL from the more common benign lymphoproliferative lesions of the orbital adnexa as prognosis of these two clinical entities varies and timely diagnosis is key. The present case demonstrates that extranodal NKTL can occur in the orbit without evidence of the more common nasal mucosal presentations and should be included in the differential diagnosis of ocular adnexal lesions suspicious for a lymphoproliferative disorder and/or an inflammatory process.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)267-269
Number of pages3
Issue number4
StatePublished - Aug 2012

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Ophthalmology


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