Perivascular epithelioid cell tumor (PEComa) of gynecologic origin: a clinicopathological study of three cases

Eur J Gynaecol Oncol. 2012;33(1):105-8.


Perivascular epithelioid cell tumors (PEComas), occasionally associated with the tuberous sclerosis complex, are characterized by varying amounts of spindle and epithelioid cells with clear to eosinophilic cytoplasm that display immunoreactivity for melanocytic markers, most frequently HMB-45. Perivascular epithelioid cell tumor of gynecologic origin is very rare, and there have been only a few reported cases. This study describes the clinical, histological, and immunohistochemical features and prognoses of three cases of gynecologic origin. Two of the three tumors were confined to the uterus and one to the vagina. None of the patients had tuberous sclerosis complex. Immunohistochemistry indicated that all three cases expressed at least one melanocytic marker, and HMB45 was a positive marker for all of them. These markers can be found in both epithelial cells and spindle cells. Except for MiTF, which was located in the nucleus, all the other antibodies were located in the cytoplasm. The three cases have been followed up for 26, 22, and three months, respectively, with disease-free survival in all cases. We conclude that PEComas of gynecologic origin have morphological and immunohistochemical features of the PEComa family, which are rare and should be included in the differential diagnosis with other tumors. Until more cases of this rare tumor are evaluated with longer follow-up, firm criteria for malignancy remain uncertain.

Publication types

  • Case Reports
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Actins / metabolism
  • Adult
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Melanoma-Specific Antigens / metabolism
  • Microphthalmia-Associated Transcription Factor / metabolism
  • Middle Aged
  • Perivascular Epithelioid Cell Neoplasms / metabolism
  • Perivascular Epithelioid Cell Neoplasms / pathology*
  • Prognosis
  • Uterine Neoplasms / metabolism
  • Uterine Neoplasms / pathology*
  • Vaginal Neoplasms / metabolism
  • Vaginal Neoplasms / pathology*
  • Vimentin / metabolism


  • ACTA2 protein, human
  • Actins
  • HMB-45 protein, human
  • Melanoma-Specific Antigens
  • Microphthalmia-Associated Transcription Factor
  • Vimentin