Metastatic pancreatic adenosquamous carcinoma to the scalp: A case report and review of the literature

J Cutan Pathol. 2020 Mar;47(3):263-268. doi: 10.1111/cup.13582. Epub 2019 Nov 12.


Metastatic carcinoma to the skin occurs in only a minority of patients with a visceral or internal malignancy, with breast, lung, and colorectum accounting for the majority of cases. We present the case of a 66-year-old man with a recent violaceous nodule of the left scalp (1.2 × 1.0 × 0.2 cm) that was a metastatic pancreatic adenosquamous carcinoma, representing a seemingly rare event. Two months prior, after complaining of right hip pain, an image revealed a right femoral lesion. A biopsy of that lesion showed moderately differentiated adenocarcinoma. Subsequent imaging showed a mass in the pancreatic tail and also markedly elevated serum tumor markers, CA 19-9 and carcinoembryonic antigen (5325 and 111.5 U/mL, respectively). Before the appearance of the scalp nodule, the patient received radiotherapy and was started on chemotherapy, which was continued after diagnosis and resection of the nodule. Subsequent metastases developed in the liver, lung and additional cutaneous lesions. He died 11 months after initial presentation with right hip pain. As this case shows, cutaneous metastases confer a poor prognosis, often with less than a year survival following their appearance.

Publication types

  • Case Reports
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Carcinoma, Adenosquamous / secondary*
  • Fatal Outcome
  • Head and Neck Neoplasms / secondary*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Pancreatic Neoplasms / pathology*
  • Scalp / pathology*
  • Skin Neoplasms / secondary*