Fibrosarcomatous change in dermatofibrosarcoma protuberans

Am J Surg Pathol. 1988 Apr;12(4):287-93. doi: 10.1097/00000478-198804000-00005.


This report describes six patients with dermatofibrosarcoma protuberans (DFSP) that contained fibrosarcomatous areas (FS). The clinical signs and symptoms, ages of the patients, and anatomic distribution of the tumors were similar to those of uncomplicated DFSP. FS was concentrated in the subcutis in each case and comprised more than 50% of the tumor in four cases. The characteristic storiform cellular arrangement of DFSP was replaced by long, gently sweeping fascicles of spindle cells that intersected at various angles, forming the so-called herringbone pattern. Trapped fat cells, characteristic of DFSP when it infiltrates subcutaneous tissue, were absent in five of the six FS and only focally present in one. Two FS were grade 1; their cytologic features were similar to those of DFSP. Four FS were grade 2 and had cytologic atypia exceeding that of DFSP. There was a statistical difference between the mitotic rates of DFSP and FS. Five patients were alive and well at the time of last follow-up (median, 2 years), and one patient had an unexcised recurrence when last examined. Six similar cases from the literature are reviewed; in one of them, the FS metastasized.

MeSH terms

  • Fibrosarcoma / pathology*
  • Fibrosarcoma / surgery
  • Humans
  • Mitosis
  • Neoplasm Recurrence, Local
  • Skin Neoplasms / pathology*
  • Skin Neoplasms / surgery