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Am J Surg Pathol. 1986 Oct;10(10):696-701.

Giant cell arteritis of the female genital tract. A report of three cases.


Three cases of giant cell arteritis involving the female genital tract of postmenopausal women are reported. The patients were 80, 64, and 57 years of age and presented with fatigue and anemia, fatigue and an abdominal mass, and fever and weight loss, respectively. Two of the patients had palpable pelvic masses; one had an ovarian mass visible on ultrasound examination. All three patients were anemic, and the erythrocyte sedimentation rate was elevated in the two women in whom it was tested. Exploratory laparotomy revealed ovarian tumors in two patients; one had a mucinous cystadenoma, and one had bilateral ovarian fibromas. The third patient had a cyst of the rete ovarii. Extensive giant cell arteritis of the small to medium-sized arteries was found unexpectedly in the ovaries and fallopian tubes of two patients who had prior hysterectomies and in the ovaries, fallopian tubes, and uterus of one patient. One patient was treated postoperatively with prednisone with improvement of symptoms and a decrease in the erythrocyte sedimentation rate. Of the two patients who received no therapy, one was found to have a thoracic aortic aneurysm 5 years postoperatively, and the other was alive without symptoms 17 years after the operation. Giant cell arteritis of the female genital tract is a rare finding in elderly women and may occur as an isolated finding or as part of generalized giant cell arteritis.

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