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J Cutan Pathol. 2001 Oct;28(9):492-5.

Primary giant cell tumor of soft tissue.

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Division of Dermatopathology, Department of Dermatology, Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19104-4283, USA.



Primary giant cell tumor of soft tissue, also known as soft tissue giant cell tumor of low malignant potential, is a rare soft tissue tumor located in both superficial and deep soft tissue. Histologically, these lesions bear a close resemblance to their bony counterparts, giant cell tumor of bone, with round to spindle-shaped cells intimately admixed with uniformly scattered osteoclast-like multinucleated giant cells. In 1989 in the dermatology literature, two malignant giant cell tumors of soft parts were described that filled the dermis and extended into the subcutaneous tissue.


The authors report the rare occurrence of a giant cell tumor of soft tissue occurring primarily in the dermis that lacks overtly malignant features and clinically was thought to be an epidermal inclusion cyst.


Light microscopy revealed a non-encapsulated cellular dermal tumor containing numerous osteoclast-like giant cells. Cytologic atypia was minimal and the mitotic count averaged 2-3/10 HPF. The histologic differential diagnosis is also discussed.


Giant cell tumor of soft tissue is a rare neoplasm of the skin, however, recognition of this tumor is important due to its behavior as a low-grade malignancy.

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