Duke dermatologists are experts in the diagnosis and treatment of cutaneous lymphoma, a rare type of cancer that primarily affects the skin. The lymphoma causes a variety of skin changes including dry, scaly, itchy red rash, as well as larger growths and tumors in the skin. We care for people across the U.S. and around the world living with this type of non-Hodgkin lymphoma. We offer the most effective therapies for cutaneous lymphoma to relieve your discomfort and help you resume an active life.
International reputation for treating cutaneous lymphoma
If you’ve been diagnosed with or suspect you have cutaneous lymphoma, we offer the expert care you need. We treat all forms of this rare cancer, which begins in white blood cells called lymphocytes, including cutaneous T-cell lymphoma (CTCL). Our experienced dermatologists are renowned for diagnosing this condition and for testing new therapies and approaches to care. Our goal is to start treatment at the earliest stage possible to slow progression of your cutaneous lymphoma, and improve your quality of life.
Choose Duke to treat cutaneous lymphoma because we offer:
- Extensive knowledge and experience. We are a national referral center for cutaneous lymphoma patients. While it is often difficult to diagnose, we have the knowledge and experience to ensure you receive an accurate diagnosis and the most effective treatment.
- Clinical trial access. We are involved in clinical trials to help set national guidelines for treating this disease. As a result, you may be eligible to participate in ongoing clinical trials, which test therapies before they are widely available.
- A team of specialists. When appropriate, our dermatologists work with lymphoma specialists -- including medical, radiation and surgical oncologists. We ensure you receive the most effective treatment for your condition.
Our goal is to begin treatment as early as possible to deliver the best outcomes and to slow the progression of the disease. Treatments clear up the rashes or tumors on your skin and relieve uncomfortable pain, itching, burning and redness.
Administered as an ointment, and is applied directly on the affected skin to kill or slow cancer growth. If cutaneous lymphoma progresses to later stages, conventional chemotherapy treatments, taken either orally or intravenously, may be used.
This form of radiation therapy uses ultraviolet light to kill or slow the progression of cancer cells that cause cutaneous lymphoma.
Medication applied to the skin boosts the body’s immune system while destroying tumor cells.
While there is no cure for cutaneous lymphoma, an accurate diagnosis is key to finding the most effective treatment.
Your doctor will evaluate the size, shape, color and texture of skin rashes, and check your lymph nodes, which contain your immune cells, to determine if they are enlarged. Blood tests help confirm a diagnosis of cutaneous lymphoma.
Removes a small piece of tissue in the affected areas for viewing under a microscope to check for cancerous cells.
Chest X-ray, CT and MRI scans determine if cutaneous lymphoma has spread to lymph nodes or other organs.