Objectives: T-cell prolymphocytic leukemia (T-PLL) is a very rare, aggressive T-cell neoplasm. Peripheral T-cell lymphoma, not otherwise specified (PTCL-NOS) is also a highly aggressive lymphoma. These two diseases can often be confused with each other; therefore, we aimed to determine the clinical and pathological differences between T-PLL and PTCL-NOS. Methods: We analyzed 15 T-PLL and 91 PTCL-NOS patients and also compared clinical features between T-PLL and PTCL-NOS with leukemic presentation. Peripheral blood images and biopsy specimens were analyzed, and treatment responses were determined via imaging modalities. The clinicopathological characteristics were statistically compared. Results: T-PLL cells were smaller in size than those of PTCL-NOS with leukemic presentation (P=.0068); moreover, PTCL-NOS cells with leukemic presentation were smaller than those of PTCL-NOS without leukemic presentation (P=.0017). Immunophenotypic patterns in T-PLL and PTCL-NOS were similar. Five-year overall survival rates of T-PLL and all PTCL-NOS patients were 57.5% and 36.8%, respectively. No significant differences were found in clinical manifestations or prognoses; T-PLL and PTCL-NOS with leukemic presentation had essentially equivalent characteristics. Conclusion: T-PLL and PTCL-NOS may share common biological and clinical characteristics in Japanese patients.
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