Primary effusion lymphoma
Primary effusion lymphoma (PEL) is a rare subtype of diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL). It may also be called body cavity–based lymphoma.
PEL most often occurs in people with weakened immune systems, such as those with HIV or AIDS. It can sometimes occur in people who have had organ transplants. PEL is often linked with Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) infection. It is also linked to Kaposi sarcoma herpes virus (KSHV) infection.
PEL is a very fast-growing (aggressive) type of NHL. It causes an abnormal buildup of fluid in the cavity (space) around the heart, the cavity around the lungs or the cavity in the abdomen. Lymphoma cells are found in the fluid in these body cavities.
PEL is treated with chemotherapy. People with HIV or AIDS will also be given highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART).
A combination of chemotherapy drugs is usually used to treat PEL. A common chemotherapy combination used is CHOP:
- cyclophosphamide (Cytoxan, Procytox)
- doxorubicin (Adriamycin)
- vincristine (Oncovin)
Highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART)
HAART is a combination of anti-HIV drugs. It is used to treat HIV infection and lower the risk of developing AIDS-related diseases.
A type of herpes virus that causes mononucleosis (a highly infectious disease that causes fever, fatigue, malaise and sore throat).
Epstein-Barr virus is associated with an increased risk of certain cancers, including Burkitt lymphoma.
Also called Human herpesvirus 4 (HHV-4).
A type of herpes virus that may cause Kaposi sarcoma.
Also called Kaposi sarcoma-associated herpesvirus or Human herpesvirus 8 (HHV-8).
Funding world-class research
Cancer affects all Canadians but together we can reduce the burden by investing in research and prevention efforts. Learn about the impact of our funded research.