Frequency

Three distinct clinical variants of BL are recognized, each of which has a distinct morphology and biologic behavior.

Endemic Burkitt's lymphoma

The original description of BL was based on this subtype of the disease, which occurs in equatorial Africa, where it is the most common childhood tumor.39 It shows male predominance and a peak incidence at 4-7 years. The areas of peak incidence appear to coincide with the distribution of endemic malaria.40

Sporadic Burkitt's lymphoma

This variant is seen throughout the world, and has a peak incidence in children and young adults, with a median age of about 30 years. It comprises between 1 and 2% of all NHLs in the United States of America and Western Europe.41

Burkitt's lymphoma in association with immunodeficiency

This variant is primarily seen in patients with acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS), and may also occur in other immune compromised patients, including those who receive immunosuppressive therapy following solid organ or stem cell transplantation.42

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