Extraneural metastases of anaplastic oligodendroglial tumors

Pathol Res Pract. 2009;205(7):502-7. doi: 10.1016/j.prp.2008.11.003. Epub 2009 May 2.


Extraneural metastases of malignant gliomas are rare. According to the literature, they tend to appear in glioblastoma patients, but are exceptionally rare in anaplastic oligodendroglioma. We report on an anaplastic oligodendroglioma and an anaplastic oligoastrocytoma that metastasized to cervical lymph nodes and bones. Both patients were women aged 54 and 30 years, and the metastases appeared following craniotomy. In the first patient, metastases to cervical lymph nodes developed one year after surgery, and, despite adjuvant therapy, recurred in the same location several times. Fine needle aspiration biopsy (FNAB) of the cervical lymph node prior to neck dissection suggested a possible metastatic primitive neuroepithelial tumor. In the second case, metastases to the sacrum and femur developed after surgery for a recurrent anaplastic oligoastrocytoma. Our two cases reconfirm a rare but definite ability not only of glioblastoma but also of anaplastic oligodendroglioma, namely to metastasize to extraneural sites. It is important to bear this in mind, particularly in cases when the history of primary brain tumor is unavailable. In such instances, the correct diagnosis of the metastatic lesion may be extremely difficult if not impossible.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Antineoplastic Combined Chemotherapy Protocols
  • Astrocytoma / secondary*
  • Astrocytoma / therapy
  • Brain Neoplasms / pathology*
  • Brain Neoplasms / therapy
  • Chemotherapy, Adjuvant
  • Cranial Irradiation
  • Craniotomy
  • Fatal Outcome
  • Female
  • Femoral Neoplasms / secondary*
  • Femoral Neoplasms / therapy
  • Humans
  • Lymphatic Metastasis
  • Middle Aged
  • Neoplasm Recurrence, Local*
  • Oligodendroglia / pathology*
  • Oligodendroglioma / secondary*
  • Oligodendroglioma / therapy
  • Radiotherapy, Adjuvant
  • Sacrum / pathology*
  • Spinal Neoplasms / secondary*
  • Spinal Neoplasms / therapy
  • Treatment Outcome