Primary and metastatic lung tumors in the pediatric population: A review and 25-year experience at a large children's hospital
Primary lung neoplasms are rare in children, but they comprise a broad and interesting spectrum of lesions, some of which are familiar from other tissue sites, and some of which are unique to the pediatric lung. To determine the relative incidence of primary and metastatic lung tumors in children and adolescents through a single-institution case series, to compare these data to reports in the medical literature, to discuss the clinical and pathologic features of primary tumors of the tracheobronchial tree and lung parenchyma in children, and to provide recommendations for handling pediatric lung cysts and tumors. A 25-year single institutional experience with pediatric lung tumors, based on surgical biopsies and resections at Texas Children's Hospital from June 1982 to May 2007, an additional 40 lung tumors referred in consultation, and a review of the medical literature. A total of 204 pediatric lung tumors were diagnosed at our institution, including 20 primary benign lesions (9.8%), 14 primary malignant lesions (6.9%), and 170 secondary lung lesions (83.3%). The ratio of primary benign to primary malignant to secondary malignant neoplasms is 1.4:1:11.6. The common types of lung cancer in adults are exceptional occurrences in the pediatric population. The most common primary lung malignancies in children are pleuropulmonary blastoma and carcinoid tumor. Other primary pediatric lung tumors include congenital peribronchial myofibroblastic tumor and other myofibroblastic lesions, sarcomas, carcinoma, and mesothelioma. Children with primary or acquired immunodeficiency are at risk for Epstein-Barr virus-related smooth muscle tumors, lymphoma, and lymphoproliferative disorders. Metastatic lung tumors are relatively common in children and also comprise a spectrum of neoplasia distinct from the adult population.