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Indian J Pathol Microbiol. 2020 Jan-Mar;63(1):53-59. doi: 10.4103/IJPM.IJPM_403_19.

A clinicopathological study of granulosa cell tumors of the ovary: Can morphology predict prognosis?

Author information

Department of Pathology, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi, India.
Department of Medical Oncology, Dr. BRA Institute Rotary Cancer Hospital, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi, India.
Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi, India.



Granulosa cell tumors (GCT) are low-grade malignant sex cord-stromal tumors (SCST) with late metastasis/recurrences and long disease-free periods. We performed a clinicopathological evaluation of GCT to ascertain features having prognostic impact.

Materials and Methods:

All cases of GCT of ovary from January 2006 to December 2018 were assessed for architectural patterns, nuclear grooves, and Call-Exner bodies. Each feature was graded on frequency of occurrence: not present (0)-very frequent (3). Anisonucleosis, necrosis, and inflammation were noted. Cases were grouped on mitotic count; <10 mitosis/10 High power field (HPF) or >=11 mitoses/10 HPF and Ki-67 index; <10% Ki-67 and >=11% Ki-67.


GCT formed 60.1% of SCST. Sixty cases' ages were in the range of 15-78 years (median 45). Clinical details were available in 37. Commonest presentation was abnormal uterine bleeding. Serum CA125 was raised in 16.1% and Inhibin in 58.8%. Seventy percent were in stage I. Disease recurrence was associated with higher stage (P = 0.007). The most frequent pattern was diffuse sheets (47%). Call-Exner bodies were absent in 22.2%. Grooves with score 1, 2, and 3 were seen in 35.8%, 23.5%, and 13.6%, respectively. Anisonucleosis was present in 26.7%, necrosis in 11.1%, and lympho-plasmacytic infiltrate in 43%. Out of total, 93.3% had <10 mitosis/10 HPF and 43.2% had recurrence, most with high Ki-67 (P = 0.064).


Our study outlines histomorphological spectrum of GCT and emphasizes its frequent occurrence in lower stages with late recurrences. The presence of grooves may indicate granulosa-cell origin. Call-Exner bodies are not a necessity. Histomorphological features are not prognostically important. However, prognostic value of Ki-67 cannot be excluded. Limitation of the study was a small number of cases with follow-up.


Clinicopathological correlation; Ki-67 proliferation index; granulosa cell tumor ovary; histopathological features; prognostic factors

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