Large Cell Calcifying Sertoli Cell Tumor: A Clinicopathologic Study of 18 Cases With Comprehensive Review of the Literature and Reappraisal of Prognostic Features

Am J Surg Pathol. 2022 May 1;46(5):688-700. doi: 10.1097/PAS.0000000000001849.


We present a series of 18 (8 clinically benign, 8 clinically ambiguous [ie, lacking sufficient follow-up to determine behavior], and 2 clinically malignant) large cell calcifying Sertoli cell tumors (LCCSCT) of the testis. The median patient age and size were 15.5 years and 1.9 cm for the benign tumors; 19 years and 1.6 cm for the ambiguous tumors; and 28.5 years and 2.3 cm for the malignant tumors. The most common presentation was a mass (n=12/18, 67%). Two patients (11%) had the Carney complex, and 2 had neurofibromatosis type 1. All tumors showed nodular growth with frequent lymphoid aggregates at the periphery. Within the nodules, there were nests and trabeculae of pale to eosinophilic epithelioid tumor cells with frequent cytoplasmic vacuolization interspersed with hypocellular, often myxoid stroma with conspicuous neutrophils. Spindled tumor cells were a minor component (<5%) in the clinically benign, ambiguous, and malignant tumors, except in 1 malignant tumor where they comprised 50% to 60% of the cellularity. Calcifications were noted in all but 2 benign tumors that were otherwise of typical appearance. Six tumors (3 in the clinically benign, 1 in the clinically ambiguous, and 2 in the malignant groups) were considered potentially malignant based on the presence of ≥1 adverse pathologic features previously recognized (see reference 1)-that is, size>4 cm, extratesticular growth, necrosis, significant atypia, vascular invasion, and >3 mitotic figures/10 HPFs. Of these, 3 tumors had ≥2 adverse features. One in a 7-year-old was clinically benign despite 5 "malignant" features; the remaining 2 in 27- and 30-year-olds, were clinically malignant, with both fulfilling previously suggested criteria for pathologically malignant tumors (age above 25 y and ≥2 adverse pathologic features). No clinically benign or ambiguous tumor met those same criteria. Of the adverse features, each of the 2 clinically malignant tumors showed tumor necrosis and lymphovascular invasion. All patients, except 1 with a clinically malignant tumor, were alive at a median follow-up of 33 months. In addition, in our literature review of 97 additional LCCSCTs, we identified 2 clinically malignant tumors in 42- and 45-year-old men that lacked any documented adverse pathologic criterion and 2 clinically malignant cases in patients with either the Carney complex or Peutz-Jeghers syndrome. In summary, our study and literature review support that all LCCSCTs in patients above 25 years old should be considered potentially malignant, and those in this age group with ≥2 adverse pathologic features warrant aggressive clinical management; furthermore, syndrome-associated cases are not uniformly benign. Tumor necrosis and lymphovascular invasion likely should receive greater adverse prognostic weight. LCCSCTs in young children may show benign outcomes despite several adverse pathologic features.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Biomarkers, Tumor
  • Carney Complex*
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Necrosis
  • Prognosis
  • Sertoli Cell Tumor* / pathology
  • Sertoli Cell Tumor* / surgery
  • Testicular Neoplasms* / metabolism
  • Testicular Neoplasms* / surgery


  • Biomarkers, Tumor