Chondroblastoma of the hands and feet

Skeletal Radiol. 2004 Oct;33(10):582-7. doi: 10.1007/s00256-004-0762-1. Epub 2004 Aug 14.


Objective: To review the imaging findings, age and gender distribution of chondroblastoma of the hands and feet.

Design and patients: Twenty-five cases of pathologically proven chondroblastoma of the hands and feet were reviewed. Available imaging modalities included radiographs (n=24), CT (n=3), MRI (n=5), and radionuclide bone scintigraphy (n=1). The following imaging features for each case were tabulated: location, presence of sclerotic margin, calcification, expansion, presence of fluid/fluid levels on cross-sectional imaging and surrounding edema on MRI. The images were evaluated for skeletal maturity using closure of the physeal plate in the region as a standard.

Results: The average age at time of diagnosis was 23 years (range 7-57 years). Eighty-four percent (n=21) of the patients were skeletally mature. Males (20 of 25) outnumbered females by a ratio of 5:1. The bones of the foot accounted for 22 cases: calcaneus (n=8), talus (n=8), metatarsals (n=3), and the cuboid (n=3). The bones of the hand accounted for three cases: phalanx (n=1), triquetrum (n=1), and a metacarpal (n=1). Radiographically all lesions were osteolytic with identifiable calcification in 54% (13 of 24). Fluid/fluid levels were seen in four of five cases on MRI. Edema on MR images was seen in 40% (2 of 5). The size of the lesions ranged from 2 to 41 cm(2).

Conclusion: Chondroblastomas of the hands and feet share many of the radiographic characteristics seen in the long bones, but manifest in skeletally mature patients with a higher male to female ratio than in long bone chondroblastoma. Talar and calcaneal lesions were encountered only in males. Chondroblastoma of the wrist and hand appears to be exceptionally rare.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Age Factors
  • Anatomy, Cross-Sectional
  • Bone Neoplasms / diagnosis*
  • Calcaneus / pathology
  • Calcinosis / diagnosis
  • Child
  • Chondroblastoma / diagnosis*
  • Edema / diagnosis
  • Female
  • Foot Bones / pathology*
  • Hand / pathology*
  • Humans
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging
  • Male
  • Metatarsal Bones / pathology
  • Middle Aged
  • Osteosclerosis / diagnosis
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Sex Factors
  • Talus / pathology
  • Tomography, X-Ray Computed