What is the role of lab tests in the workup of Kaposi sarcoma (KS)?

Updated: Apr 11, 2019
  • Author: Jessica Katz, MD, PhD, FACP; Chief Editor: Edwin Choy, MD, PhD  more...
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Answer

All patients who present with Kaposi sarcoma should be evaluated for underlying immunodeficiency and undergo HIV screening. CD4 lymphocyte counts and plasma HIV viral-load studies should be performed for patients with known HIV infection. Patients with AIDS-associated Kaposi sarcoma should also have fecal occult blood testing to screen for possible gastrointestinal involvement. [71]  ). This usually is not necessary for patients with less aggressive forms of Kaposi sarcoma, in which visceral involvement is uncommon.

Patients with Kaposi sarcoma who present with unexplained fevers should undergo additional workup to assess for other human herpes virus 8 (HHV-8)–associated disease, including multicentric Castleman disease or Kaposi sarcoma herpes virus (KSHV)–associated inflammatory cytokine syndrome.

Recommended laboratory tests include the following [72] ;

  • C-reactive protein
  • KSHV/HHV-8 viral load
  • Serum protein electrophoresis (SPEP)
  • Interleukin-6 (IL-6) or IL-10

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