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Mod Pathol. 1999 Jun;12(6):569-75.

Lymphangioma and congenital pulmonary lymphangiectasis: a histologic, immunohistochemical, and clinicopathologic comparison.

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Department of Pathology, University of Utah Health Sciences Center and Primary Children's Medical Center, Salt Lake City 84123, USA.


Lymphangioma (LA) and congenital pulmonary lymphangiectasis (CPL) are part of a spectrum of lymphatic disorders less well characterized than other vascular tumors and malformations. Recent studies showed proliferative and involutional growth phases for hemangiomas that distinguish them from malformations. We investigated immunohistochemical reactivity and proliferative activity to determine whether a similar diagnostically/prognostically useful pattern exists for LA, comparing LA with CPL as a malformative lesion. Immunohistochemical tests for vimentin, Factor VIII-related protein, CD31, CD34, CD45RO, smooth muscle actin, Type IV collagen, MIB-1, bcl-2, and topoisomerase IIalpha were performed on 20 LAs and 10 cases of CPL. Giemsa staining was also performed to quantitate mast cells. Clinicopathologic correlation was performed by medical record review. LA and CPL shared a similar immunohistochemical profile for vimentin, Factor VIII-related protein, CD31, CD34, smooth muscle actin, CD34, and, to a lesser extent, CD45RO. CD31 and CD34 displayed the most uniform pattern of endothelial reactivity, although CD34 had high background staining. bcl-2 was negative. Four LAs exhibited focal low reactivity for MIB-1 and topoisomerase IIalpha; recent infection and thrombosis were associated conditions. LAs displayed seven-fold more mast cells and more reactive T lymphocytes than did cases of CPL. LA and CPL had similar immunohistochemical profiles; LA resembled vascular malformations more than hemangiomas. CD31 and CD34 were useful for detection of small lymphatics at resection margins of LA, a feature associated with recurrence. MIB-1 and topoisomerase IIalpha expression were associated with inflammatory, thrombotic, or reactive processes and were not diagnostically useful. Abundant mast cells, which also were noted in other soft tissue neoplasms, prompt speculation concerning their role in the growth of LAs.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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