Epstein-Barr virus (EBV)-positive mucocutaneous ulcer (EBV MCU) is a B-cell lymphoproliferative disorder occurring in elderly or iatrogenic immunocompromised patients. It has not been reported in solid organ transplant recipients. We observed 7 patients with EBV MCU in a cohort of 70 transplant recipients with EBV+ posttransplant lymphoproliferative disorder (PTLD). Transplants included: 5 renal, 1 heart, and 1 lung. Median patient age was 61; 5 were male. EBV MCU was observed in oral mucosa in 4 and gastrointestinal tract in 3. Duration of immunosuppressive therapy before EBV MCU was 0.6 to 13 years. Ulcers were undermined by inflammatory cells and polymorphic or monomorphic large cell lymphoproliferation. Reed-Sternberg-like cells were present in 5/7. Large B cells were CD20, CD30, and EBV-encoded RNA positive in all cases. Diagnosis in 3 recent patients was EBV MCU; 4 patients diagnosed before familiarity with EBV MCU were classified as monomorphic large cell (n=3) and polymorphic (n=1) PTLD. None of the patients had EBV DNA in their blood (<1000 copies/mL) at diagnosis or follow-up versus 35/44 transplant patients with systemic PTLD (P<0.001). All lesions resolved with reduced immunosuppression (7/7), change in immunosuppression (2/7), and rituximab (3/7). Five patients are living: 4 healthy, 1 awaiting second renal transplant. Two patients died 3 and 5 years after resolution of EBV MCU. No patient recurred with EBV MCU or other PTLDs. EBV MCU mimics more aggressive categories of PTLD but lacks EBV DNA in blood, which may be a useful distinguishing feature. Lesions are likely to resolve with conservative management. Awareness of EBV MCU in the posttransplant setting is necessary for appropriate diagnosis and treatment.
- Mucocutaneous ulcer
- Organ posttransplant