Pulmonary and mediastinal glomus tumors--report of five cases including a pulmonary glomangiosarcoma: a clinicopathologic study with literature review

Am J Surg Pathol. 2000 Aug;24(8):1105-14. doi: 10.1097/00000478-200008000-00008.


Pulmonary and mediastinal glomus tumors are rare lesions, with four previously reported primary pulmonary cases and three mediastinal cases. The authors report one mediastinal glomus tumor, a locally infiltrative type, and four pulmonary glomus tumors, including the first case of primary pulmonary glomangiosarcoma. These tumors show a variety of clinical and pathologic differences from the more common cutaneous variety, including later age at presentation, larger size, and more frequent atypical/malignant features. Mediastinal and pulmonary glomus tumors both have an average patient age at presentation of 45 years. However, compared with their pulmonary counterparts, mediastinal glomus tumors are less common, more often symptomatic, and are larger (average size, 5.4 cm). Additionally, mediastinal glomus tumors more often demonstrate malignant or atypical features. Pulmonary glomus tumors average 3.3 cm in greatest dimension, with the majority measuring less than 2.5 cm. The pulmonary glomangiosarcoma presented was large, measuring 9.5 cm, and showed increased mitotic count (9 mitoses/10 high-power fields), necrosis, cytologic atypia, and was associated with disseminated disease. Regardless of clinical symptoms, histologic features, and even metastases, the vast majority of all benign and malignant glomus tumors are indolent and cured surgically, with adjuvant therapy needed only for occasional patients with more advanced disease. The four patients with glomus tumors reported are currently alive and free of disease as of last follow up. The patient with the glomangiosarcoma developed widespread metastases and died of disease 68 weeks after initial therapy.

Publication types

  • Case Reports
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Biomarkers, Tumor / analysis
  • Female
  • Glomus Tumor / diagnosis
  • Glomus Tumor / pathology*
  • Hemangiosarcoma / pathology
  • Humans
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Lung Neoplasms / diagnosis
  • Lung Neoplasms / pathology*
  • Male
  • Mediastinal Neoplasms / diagnosis
  • Mediastinal Neoplasms / pathology*
  • Microscopy, Electron
  • Middle Aged


  • Biomarkers, Tumor