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Mod Pathol. 2007 Jul;20(7):729-33. Epub 2007 Apr 27.

Colorectal adenocarcinoma with micropapillary pattern and its association with lymph node metastasis.

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Department of Pathology, The Methodist Hospital, Houston, TX 77030, USA.


Micropapillary carcinoma has been reported as an aggressive variant of carcinoma in several organs, where it is associated with frequent lymphovascular invasion and poor clinical outcome. This study explored the clinicopathological features of colorectal adenocarcinoma with a micropapillary carcinoma component and compared them with those of conventional colorectal adenocarcinoma. One hundred seventy-eight consecutive cases of surgically resected colorectal carcinomas were studied for tumor size, type, depth of invasion, nodal and distant metastases, tumor stage, and percentage and extent of micropapillary component. Among 178 cases of colorectal carcinoma, 34 (19.1%) cases had a micropapillary component, which ranged from 5 to 60% of the entire tumor. Lymph node metastasis was identified in 25 of 34 (73.5%) carcinomas with micropapillary component, whereas they were detected in 61 of 144 (42.4%) cases without micropapillary component (P=0.001). Lymphovascular invasion was identified more frequently in carcinoma with micropapillary component (41.2%) than carcinoma without micropapillary component (20.1%; P<0.05). Distant metastases occurred in 4 of 34 cases (11.7%) with micropapillary component and in 10 of 144 cases (6.9%) without micropapillary component (P=0.311). Multivariate regression analysis demonstrated that the presence of micropapillary component, as well as tumor stage and lymphovascular invasion are independent predictors of regional nodal metastasis.

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