Kikuchi–Fujimoto Lymphadenopathy

  • Roberto N. Miranda
  • Joseph D. Khoury
  • L. Jeffrey Medeiros
Part of the Atlas of Anatomic Pathology book series (AAP)


Kikuchi–Fujimoto (or Kikuchi) lymphadenopathy is a rare, regional, self-limited, necrotizing, histiocytic lymphadenitis that is frequently associated with mild fever and other systemic symptoms. Kikuchi et al., as well as Fujimoto et al., first described the disease independently in 1972 in the Japanese literature. The etiology of Kikuchi–Fujimoto disease remains unknown, although a viral etiology has long been suspected. The pathogenesis of the disease appears to be dominated by extensive apoptosis of CD8-positive cytotoxic T lymphocytes.

Although its incidence is highest in young females in Japan and other East Asian countries, Kikuchi–Fujimoto disease has been reported in male and female patients of all age groups and from diverse ethnic and geographic backgrounds. Patients present with acute or subacute onset of painful or tender unilateral cervical lymph node enlargement often involving the posterior cervical triangle. Involvement of other lymph node groups, including those in the axillary and inguinal regions, may be seen in a minority of cases. Rarely, patients present with generalized lymphadenopathy or with deep lymph node involvement. Lymphadenopathy is commonly associated with systemic symptoms that include mild or moderate fever, chills, sore throat, myalgia, and cutaneous eruptions; few patients also have hepatosplenomegaly. Kikuchi–Fujimoto lymphadenopathy is self-limited and resolves within weeks to few months in the vast majority of patients, with recurrences limited to approximately 3 % of patients. Rare instances of fulminant fatal disease have been described in case reports; whether these cases are truly examples of Kikuchi–Fujimoto lymphadenopathy is unclear.


East Asian Country Japanese Literature Mild Fever Generalize Lymphadenopathy Cutaneous Eruption 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Roberto N. Miranda
    • 1
  • Joseph D. Khoury
    • 1
  • L. Jeffrey Medeiros
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of HematopathologyThe University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer CenterHoustonUSA

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