Malignant lymphoma infiltrating the abdominal aorta and resulting in an aortic aneurysm has never been documented. We report here a case of angiocentric T-cell lymphoma in a 33-year-old man who for months presented intermittent fever, splenomegaly, and an abdominal pulsatile mass. Angiography revealed extensive aneurysmal dilatation of the infrarenal abdominal aorta, bilateral iliac artery, and right common femoral artery. Splenic abscess and infected abdominal aortic aneurysm were initially suspected. An urgent splenectomy and aneurysmectomy with an aortic bifemoral bypass were performed. Pathological examination of the aortic aneurysm showed extensive necrosis, severe atherosclerosis, and lymphoma cell infiltration of the aortic wall. The lymphoid cells in the aorta and spleen were stained positive for CD45RO, CD56, and CD8, but negative for CD4 and CD 19. Double- labeling immunohistochemistry and in situ hybridization using EBER1 for Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) revealed positive nuclear staining in the atypical T-lymphoid cells. This is the first definitive proof of peripheral T-cell lymphoma involving the abdominal aorta. Our evidence also supports that the EBV infection of T cells could be responsible for the atherosclerosis and hypertriglyceridemia, and the angiocentricity of the tumor cells apparently results in the presenting atherosclerotic aortic wall destruction, providing an additional causative concept for abdominal aortic aneurysm.
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