Lymphoma Mimicking Chronic Active Epstein-Barr Virus: A Case Report

Rohini Bahethi, Mingyang Gray, Christian Salib, Ilya Likhterov

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) is the main cause of infectious mononucleosis (IM), a self-limiting infection among immunocompetent patients. EBV is also implicated in the development of several malignancies. We describe a case of a previously healthy 34-year-old man who presented with non-tender, enlarging, right cervical lymphadenopathy for over a year that was associated with significant weight loss, fevers, and night sweats. Two fine needle core biopsies showed inconclusive then reactive tissue, respectively. A third excisional biopsy demonstrated a reactive lymph node with EBV-positive IM. There was no evidence of lymphoma by histologic examination or flow cytometry. A diagnosis of chronic active EBV (CAEBV) was rendered. Subsequent lymph node debulking six months later showed classic Hodgkin lymphoma (CHL) positive for EBV. The patient underwent chemotherapy with full treatment response. This is an unusual presentation of EBV infection that led to either a delayed onset or delayed diagnosis of CHL.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1028-1031
Number of pages4
JournalHead and Neck Pathology
Issue number4
StatePublished - Dec 2020


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