Diseases & Conditions


Cutaneous T-Cell Lymphomas

Synonyms of Cutaneous T-Cell Lymphomas
  • CTCL

Disorder Subdivisions

  • Granulomatous Slack Skin
  • Lymphomatoid Papulosis
  • Mycosis Fungoides
  • Pagetoid Reticulosis (Woringer-Kolopp Disease)
  • Primary Cutaneous Anaplastic Large Cell Lymphomas
  • Sezary Syndrome
  • Subcutaneous Panniculitic T-Cell Lymphoma

General Discussion
Cutaneous T-cell lymphomas (CTCLs) are a group of disorders characterized by abnormal accumulation of malignant T-cells in the skin potentially resulting in the development of rashes, plaques and tumors. CTCLs belong to a larger group of disorders known as non-Hodgkin's lymphomas (NHLs), which are related malignancies (cancers) that affect the lymphatic system (lymphomas). Functioning as part of the immune system, the lymphatic system helps to protect the body against infection and disease. It consists of a network of tubular channels (lymph vessels) that drain a thin watery fluid known as lymph from different areas of the body into the bloodstream. Lymph accumulates in the tiny spaces between tissue cells and contains proteins, fats, and certain white blood cells known as lymphocytes.

There are two main types of lymphocytes: B-lymphocytes, which may produce specific antibodies to neutralize certain invading microorganisms, and T-lymphocytes, which may directly destroy microorganisms or assist in the activities of other lymphocytes. CTCLs result from errors in the production of T-lymphocytes or transformation of T-lymphocytes into malignant cells. In CTCLs abnormal, uncontrolled growth and multiplication (proliferation) of malignant T-lymphocytes result in accumulation of these lymphocytes in the skin. In some cases, malignant lymphocytes may spread to affect the lymph nodes and eventually to other bodily tissues and organs, potentially resulting in life-threatening complications. The specific symptoms and physical findings may vary from case to case, depending upon the extent and region(s) of involvement, the specific type of CTCL present, and various additional factors.

Non-Hodgkin?s lymphomas, such as CTCLs, may also be categorized based upon certain characteristics of the cancer cells as seen under a microscope and how quickly they may tend to grow and spread. For example, CTCLs may be characterized as low-grade (or indolent) lymphomas, which tend to grow slowly and result in few associated symptoms, or intermediate-grade or high-grade (aggressive) lymphomas, which typically grow rapidly, requiring prompt treatment. Most cases of CTCL, especially the classic form (mycosis fungoides), are slow-growing (indolent) lymphomas.

Organizations related to Cutaneous T-Cell Lymphomas
  • American Cancer Society, Inc.
    1599 Clifton Road NE
    Atlanta GA 30329
    Phone #: 404-320-3333
    800 #: 800-227-2345
    e-mail: N/A
    Home page: http://www.cancer.org
  • Canadian Cancer Society
    10 Alcorn Avenue
    Toronto None M4V 3B1
    Phone #: (41-6) -961-7223
    800 #: (88-8) -939-3333
    e-mail: [email protected]
    Home page: http://www.cancer.ca/
  • Cancer Hope Network
    2 North Road
    Chester NJ 07930
    Phone #: 908-879-4039
    800 #: 877-467-3638
    e-mail: [email protected]ork.org
    Home page: http://www.cancerhopenetwork.org
  • Cutaneous Lymphoma Foundation
    PO Box 374
    Birmingham MI 48012
    Phone #: 248-644-9014
    800 #: N/A
    e-mail: [email protected]
    Home page: http://www.clfoundation.org
  • Friends of Cancer Research
    2231 Crystal Drive
    Arlington VA 22202
    Phone #: 703-302-1503
    800 #: N/A
    e-mail: [email protected]
    Home page: http://www.focr.org
  • International Cancer Alliance for Research and Education
    4853 Cordell Avenue
    Bethesda MD 20814
    Phone #: 301-656-3461
    800 #: 800-422-7361
    e-mail: [email protected]
    Home page: http://www.icare.org
  • Lance Armstrong Foundation
    PO Box 161550
    Austin TX 78716-1150
    Phone #: 512-236-8820
    800 #: 866-235-7205
    e-mail: N/A
    Home page: http://www.livestrong.org
  • Leukemia & Lymphoma Society
    1311 Mamaroneck Ave
    White Plains NY 10605
    Phone #: 914-949-5213
    800 #: 800-955-4572
    e-mail: [email protected]
    Home page: http://www.LLS.org
  • Lymphoma Association (UK)
    PO Box 386
    Bucks Intl HP20 2GA
    Phone #: 012-96 -619400
    800 #: --
    e-mail: lymphoma.org.uk
    Home page: http://www.lymphoma.org.uk
  • Lymphoma Foundation Canada
    16-1375 Southdown Road
    Ontario None L5J 2Z1
    Phone #: (90-5) -822-5135
    800 #: 866-) 6-59-5556
    e-mail: [email protected]
    Home page: http://www.lymphoma.ca
  • Lymphoma Research Foundation
    111 Broadway
    New York NY 10006
    Phone #: 212-349-2910
    800 #: 800-235-6848
    e-mail: [email protected]
    Home page: http://www.lymphoma.org
  • Mycosis Fungoides Network
    Department of Dermatology
    Cincinnati OH 45267-0523
    Phone #: --
    800 #: --
    e-mail: N/A
    Home page: N/A
  • National Cancer Institute
    6116 Executive Blvd, MSC 8322, Room 3036A
    Bethesda MD 20892-8322
    Phone #: 301-435-3848
    800 #: 800-422-6237
    e-mail: N/A
    Home page: http://www.cancer.gov
  • National Cancer Institute Physician Data Query (PDQ) Cancer Information Service
    9000 Rockville Pike
    Bethesda MD 20892
    Phone #: --
    800 #: 800-422-6237
    e-mail: N/A
    Home page: http://www.cancernet.nci.nih.gov/pdq.html
  • National Coalition for Cancer Survivorship
    1010 Wayne Avenue
    Silver Spring MD 20910-5600
    Phone #: 301-650-9127
    800 #: 877-622-7937
    e-mail: [email protected]
    Home page: http://
  • OncoLink: The University of Pennsylvania Cancer Center Resource
    3400 Spruce Street
    Philadelphia PA 19104-4283
    Phone #: 215-349-5445
    800 #: --
    e-mail: [email protected]
    Home page: http://www.oncolink.upenn.edu
  • Rare Cancer Alliance
    1649 North Pacana Way
    Green Valley AZ 85614
    Phone #: 520-625-5495
    800 #: --
    e-mail: [email protected]
    Home page: http://www.rare-cancer.org
  • UCSF Hemophilia Treatment Center
    400 Parnassus Ave.
    San Francisco CA 94143
    Phone #: 415-353-2986
    800 #: N/A
    e-mail: N/A
    Home page: http://www.ucsfhealth.org/adult/medical_services/blood/hemophilia/index.html
  • Wellness Community
    919 18th Street N.W.
    Washington DC 20006
    Phone #: 202-659-9709
    800 #: 888-793-9355
    e-mail: [email protected]
    Home page: http://www.thewellnesscommunity.org

For a Complete Report

This is an abstract of a report from the National Organization for Rare Disorders, Inc. ? (NORD). A copy of the complete report can be obtained for a small fee by visiting the NORD website. The complete report contains additional information including symptoms, causes, affected population, related disorders, standard and investigational treatments (if available), and references from medical literature. For a full-text version of this topic, see http://www.rarediseases.org/search/rdblist.html