Background.  Primary cutaneous lymphoma (PCL) is an extranodal non-Hodgkin lymphoma with primary involvement of the skin. Epidemiological data on PCLs according to the World Health Organization/European Organization for Research and Treatment of Cancer classification (WHO-EORTC) has not been investigated in Korea to date.

Aim.  To evaluate the demographic characteristics, clinical and histological features, and survival data of patients with PCL according to the WHO-EORTC classification.

Methods.  In total, 93 patients with PCL were retrospectively identified from an extensive review of medical records over a 16-year period.

Results. The tumours found included primary cutaneous CD30+ lymphoproliferative disorders, extranodal natural killer/T-cell lymphoma and primary cutaneous diffuse large B-cell lymphoma. We found that 81.6% of the patients had primary cutaneous T-cell and natural killer-cell lymphoma, and 16.2% had primary cutaneous B-cell lymphoma, with 2.2% having precursor haematological neoplasms. The median age was 52 years (range 3–95) and the male : female ratio was 1 : 1.16. The 5-year survival rate was 92.5%.

Conclusions.  The incidence rates of many PCL subtypes in Koreans differ from those of other countries.