Lymphoma (classification)

Key Information

Appropriate Tests

WHO Classification of Lymphoid Neoplasms

See Lymphoma (non-Hodgkin), and Hodgkin lymphoma for appropriate tests.

This has replaced the REAL and Working Formulations. There is overlap between the leukaemias and lymphomas, as reflected in the classification.

Sub-classification requires concordance of clinical findings with Histology, Immunohistochemistry, Lymphocyte immunophenotyping, Cytogenetics - oncology and Molecular genetics.

Precursor B-cell neoplasm


Precursor B-lymphoblastic leukaemia/lymphoma


Mature (peripheral) B-cell neoplasms


Small lymphocytic lymphoma / Chronic lymphocytic leukaemia


Lymphoplasmacytic lymphoma / Waldenström's macroglobulinaemia


Splenic marginal zone lymphoma


Hairy cell leukaemia


Plasma cell myeloma / Plasmacytoma


Extranodal marginal zone B-cell lymphoma of mucosa-associated lymphoid tissue type


Follicular lymphoma

Three grades:

  1. <20-25% large cells or < 5 large cells per high-powered field;
  2. 20-50% large cells or 5-15 large cells per high-powered field; and
  3. >50% large cells or >15 large cells per high-powered field.

Mantle cell lymphoma


Diffuse large B-cell lymphoma

  • Mediastinal large B-cell lymphoma
  • Primary effusion lymphoma


Burkitt lymphoma/leukaemia


Precursor T-cell neoplasm


Precursor T-lymphoblastic leukaemia/lymphoma


Mature T-cell and NK-cell lymphomas


T-cell prolymphocytic leukaemia


T-cell granular lymphocytic leukaemia


Aggressive NK-cell leukaemia


Adult T-cell leukaemia/lymphoma (HTLV-1+)


Extra-nodal NK/T-cell lymphoma, nasal type


Enteropathy-type T-cell lymphoma


Hepatosplenic gamma-delta T-cell lymphoma


Subcutaneous panniculitis-like T-cell lymphoma


Mycosis fungoides/Sezary syndrome


Anaplastic large cell lymphoma, T/null cell, primary cutaneous type


Peripheral T-cell lymphoma not otherwise characterised


Angioimmunoblastic T-cell lymphoma


Anaplastic large cell lymphoma, T/null cell, primary systemic type


Hodgkin lymphoma


Nodular lymphocyte predominant Hodgkin lymphoma


Classical Hodgkin lymphoma

  • Nodular sclerosis Hodgkin lymphoma
  • Lymphocyte-rich classical Hodgkin lymphoma
  • Mixed cellularity Hodgkin lymphoma
  • Lymphocyte-depleted classical Hodgkin lymphoma


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