Foamy gland carcinoma is a variant of adenocarcinoma of the prostate that typically is assigned a Gleason score 3+3=6. The morphologic features of high foamy gland carcinoma have not been previously studied. We analyzed 55 cases of high-grade (Gleason score 7 or greater) foamy gland carcinoma of the prostate in needle biopsy (n=49) or transurethral resection (n=6) specimens. The number of cores involved by high-grade foamy gland carcinoma ranged from 1 to 12, with more than 1 core involved in 61% of cases (mean 3.4 cores). On average, 84% of the total tumor volume was foamy gland carcinoma, with high-grade foamy gland cancer averaging 73% of the total foamy gland carcinoma. The following results pertain only to the high-grade foamy gland cancer component. The most common architectural pattern was cribriform (73%), followed by fused/poorly defined glands (55%), cords/single cells (11%), and solid sheets (5%). Nuclear enlargement was observed in 45 of the 55 studied cases (82%). Prominent nucleoli were either absent or infrequent in 38 cases (69%). Frequent to numerous prominent nucleoli were seen more frequently in foamy gland carcinoma with Gleason score 8 or above (52%) than those with Gleason score 7 (16%) (P<0.004). Mitotic figures were observed in 22 cases (40%), and present in 65% of the cases with Gleason score 8 or above, but only in 22% of the cases with Gleason score 7 (P<0.002). In 31 cases (56%), intraluminal dense pink secretions were identified. Perineural invasion and extraprostatic extension identified on the biopsy specimens were noted in 18 cases (33%) and in 5 cases (9%), respectively. In 18 cases (33%), there was at least a moderate stromal reaction. A moderate or greater stromal reaction was seen in 48% (11/23) of the cases with Gleason score 8 or above compared with 22% (7/32) of the cases with Gleason score 7 (P=0.04). In 6 cases, there was a peculiar extensive desmoplastic reaction almost obscuring the carcinoma component, 5 of which were Gleason scores 4+4=8. Concurrent ordinary acinar nonfoamy adenocarcinoma was encountered in 26 of 55 cases (47%) with the following Gleason scores: Gleason 6 (27%); Gleason 7 (27%); and Gleason 8 to 10 (46%). Associated ordinary high-grade prostatic intraepithelial neoplasia and foamy gland variant of high-grade prostatic intraepithelial neoplasia/intraductal adenocarcinoma were seen in 13 cases (24%) and 11 cases (20%), respectively. Of the 19 cases with available immunohistochemical stains for high molecular weight cytokeratin, 7 (37%) showed nonspecific labeling of cancer cells in a nonbasal cell pattern. A similar finding was seen in 1 of the 7 (14%) cases with available stains for p63. Alpha-methyl-CoA racemase positivity was noted in all 9 cases stained. In summary, uncommonly foamy gland carcinoma consists of cribriform, fused/poorly formed glands, cords/single cells, and solid sheets typical of Gleason patterns 4 and 5. High-grade foamy gland cancer shares certain morphologic features with more typical lower-grade foamy gland cancer including relatively bland nuclei with more difficult to identify nucleoli and frequent intraluminal dense pink secretions. However, consistent with their higher architectural grade, high-grade foamy gland cancers had more prominent nucleoli and increased mitotic figures compared with lower-grade foamy gland cancer. A unique subset of high-grade foamy gland carcinoma poses particularly difficult diagnostic challenges, with scattered, scant, relatively bland foamy glands imbedded in an extensive densely sclerotic desmoplastic stroma.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: An update is provided of the Gleason grading system, which has evolved significantly since its initial description.
A search was performed using the MEDLINE(R) database and referenced lists of relevant studies to obtain articles concerning changes to the Gleason grading system.
Since the introduction of the Gleason grading system more than 40 years ago many aspects of prostate cancer have changed, including prostate specific antigen testing, transrectal ultrasound guided prostate needle biopsy with greater sampling, immunohistochemistry for basal cells that changed the classification of prostate cancer and new prostate cancer variants. The system was updated at a 2005 consensus conference of international experts in urological pathology, under the auspices of the International Society of Urological Pathology. Gleason score 2-4 should rarely if ever be diagnosed on needle biopsy, certain patterns (ie poorly formed glands) originally considered Gleason pattern 3 are now considered Gleason pattern 4 and all cribriform cancer should be graded pattern 4. The grading of variants and subtypes of acinar adenocarcinoma of the prostate, including cancer with vacuoles, foamy gland carcinoma, ductal adenocarcinoma, pseudohyperplastic carcinoma and small cell carcinoma have also been modified. Other recent issues include reporting secondary patterns of lower and higher grades when present to a limited extent, and commenting on tertiary grade patterns which differ depending on whether the specimen is from needle biopsy or radical prostatectomy. Whereas there is little debate on the definition of tertiary pattern on needle biopsy, this issue is controversial in radical prostatectomy specimens. Although tertiary Gleason patterns are typically added to pathology reports, they are routinely omitted in practice since there is no simple way to incorporate them in predictive nomograms/tables, research studies and patient counseling. Thus, a modified radical prostatectomy Gleason scoring system was recently proposed to incorporate tertiary Gleason patterns in an intuitive fashion. For needle biopsy with different cores showing different grades, the current recommendation is to report the grades of each core separately, whereby the highest grade tumor is selected as the grade of the entire case to determine treatment, regardless of the percent involvement. After the 2005 consensus conference several studies confirmed the superiority of the modified Gleason system as well as its impact on urological practice.
It is remarkable that nearly 40 years after its inception the Gleason grading system remains one of the most powerful prognostic factors for prostate cancer. This system has remained timely because of gradual adaptations by urological pathologists to accommodate the changing practice of medicine.
The Journal of urology 12/2009; 183(2):433-40. DOI:10.1016/j.juro.2009.10.046 · 4.47 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Cystic change in adenocarcinoma of the prostate is unusual and may be confused with benign cystic atrophy. Limited data exist on the pathologic attributes of microcystic change in malignant prostatic glands. The aim of this study was to assess histologic and immunohistologic characteristics of microcystic adenocarcinoma of the prostate. This alteration was defined as cystic dilatation and rounded expansion of the malignant gland profile, with a flat luminal cell lining layer. We identified 53 cases with microcystic change from a survey of 472 radical prostatectomy cases, for an incidence of 11.2%. The greatest diameter of the dilated cancer glands was 0.4 to 0.9 mm, with a mean diameter 10-fold greater than adjacent small malignant glands. The microcystic glands were typically adjacent to usual small acinar adenocarcinoma. Atrophic features were seen at least focally in all cases, although many microcystic adenocarcinoma epithelia exhibited a moderate amount of cytoplasm. Gleason grade 3 was the predominant grade of the adjacent nonmicrocystic malignant glands. Intraluminal crystalloids, and wispy blue intraluminal mucin were seen in all cases. Ninety-six percent of the microcystic cases showed alpha-methylacyl CoA racemase overexpression and all cases showed complete basal cell loss (using 34betaE12 and p63 antibodies) in immunohistochemistry. Microcystic adenocarcinoma of the prostate is a distinctive histomorphologic presentation of prostatic adenocarcinoma that is deceptively benign-looking at low magnifications. Detection of intraluminal crystalloids or wispy blue mucin at low magnification, immunostains for alpha-methylacyl CoA racemase, and basal cells, and a search for adjacent usual small acinar adenocarcinoma are helpful diagnostic aids. Diagnostic awareness of this growth pattern of prostatic carcinoma is important to avoid underdiagnosis of adenocarcinoma of the prostate.
The American journal of surgical pathology 03/2010; 34(4):556-61. DOI:10.1097/PAS.0b013e3181d2a549 · 5.15 Impact Factor
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