Pancreatic Pathology Online
Pathology of Cystic Tumours of the Pancreas
Dr Sampurna Roy MD July 2016
Benign tumours of the exocrine pancreas are rare.
The most common one, which presents as a large cystic tumour, deserves mention because it is important that it be differentiated diagnostically from the various congenital and acquired cysts that are not true neoplasms. Difficulties of differential diagnosis of pancreatic pseudocysts and cystic neoplasms.
Cystic tumours constitute fewer than 5% of pancreatic neoplasms.
Tumours are usually located in the body or tail and present as painless, slow-growing masses.
1. Serous microcystic adenoma: Predominantly in women older than age 65.
Tumours are usually solitary, 6 to 10 cm in diameter, well circumscribed, and round.
Tumours are made up of numerous tiny cysts.
A few larger ones are filled with serous, clear, watery fluid and lined with a bland serous epithelium.
Sometimes there is a central fibrous core.
Prognosis is excellent, with little risk of malignant transformation.
Unilocular or multuloculated cystic neoplasms upto 10 cm in diameter filled with mucinous material and lined by mucin-producing tall columnar cells (except when compressed into a flattened epithelium).
These are usually noted in women and may vary from benign (cystadenoma) to borderline to malignant (cystadenocarcinoma), on the basis of epithelial pleomorphism and evidence of invasion and metastasis.
Prognosis depends on adequacy of surgical resection.
A round, well-circumscribed tumour with solid and cystic regions.
The cystic areas are primarily due to hemorrhage and cystic degeneration.
Tumour cells are small and uniform, growing in solid sheets or papillary projections.
Tumours are seen in adolescent girls and women younger than 35 years of age.
Prognosis is usually excellent, although metastases can occur.
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