Lymphoid Reactive Hyperplasia Versus Lymphosarcoma

Last Modified: April 22, 2007


Dear OncoLink "Ask The Experts,"

My Austrian Sheppard, Ozzie Blue, was just diagnosed with "lymphoid reactive hyperplasia". His vet thought at first that it was lymphosarcoma, but a punch biopsy diagnosed it as lymphoid reactive hyperplasia.

What is the best treatment for him? For two weeks now he has been on a treatment of Doxycycline 100 mg twice a day & Prednisone 10 mg twice a day. There are about 8 tumors throughout his body (neck, chest, stomach, back legs) and they have not gone down much, if at all.


Lili Duda, VMD, Section Editor of the OncoLink Veterinary Oncology Menu, responds:

Lymphoid reactive hyperplasia is just the normal response of the lymph nodes to some antigenic stimulus, such as infection or inflammation. Generalized lymphadenopathy due to reactive hyperplasia can occur with a variety of diseases, such as skin disease and various tick-borne diseases, among many others. A thorough search for the underlying source of infection/inflammation should be undertaken, and treatment should be instituted accordingly. If the dog does not respond to this treatment and the lymph nodes remain persistently enlarged, an entire lymph node should be submitted for biopsy. In some cases of early lymphoma, a small biopsy sample (such as an aspirate, needle, or punch biopsy) can return a diagnosis of hyperplasia rather than lymphoma because the disease might be patchily scattered throughout the node.