Mycosis fungoides often presents with an area of red, slightly scaly skin, usually in sun-protected parts of the body, with variable size and shape. Common locations for these symptoms are the buttocks, trunk, upper thighs – all areas that are typically shielded from sun exposure.
MF is very difficult to diagnose in early stages as symptoms and skin biopsy findings are similar to other skin conditions, leading to frequent misdiagnosis. Patients may go on for years before a definitive diagnosis is established. Both the clinical findings (based on both history and examination) and the skin biopsy findings are essential for diagnosis. Physicians will examine lymph nodes and often order blood tests including a test for Sézary cells in the blood.
A Patient’s Guide for Understanding Cutaneous Lymphoma, clfoundation.org 9/2013