Computed tomography features and clinicopathological characteristics of gastric glomus tumor

BMC Gastroenterol. 2022 Apr 9;22(1):174. doi: 10.1186/s12876-022-02241-w.


Background: Gastric glomus tumor (GGT) is a rare neoplasm that is difficult to distinguish from other gastric submucosal tumors due to a lack of diagnostic experience. The goal of this study was to better understand GGT by looking at its clinicopathological features, computed tomography (CT) features, and differential diagnosis.

Methods: The clinical data and CT findings of 21 pathologically confirmed GGT patients were examined. The clinical characteristics and CT findings of benign GGT were compared to gastric stromal tumors (GST) (n = 30) and heterotopic pancreas (n = 30).

Results: The 21 cases included six males and fifteen females ranging in age from 42 to 64 years. The lesions were found in the gastric body in four cases and the antrum in seventeen. GGT was diagnosed as benign in 20 cases and malignant in one. In benign cases, the glomus cells were small, uniform, showed perivascular hemangiopericytoma‑like or solid nest‑like structures. Obvious mitotic figures were observed in the malignant case. SMA staining was positive in the tumor cells. A quasi-round or round solid mass protruded into the gastric cavity in 20 benign cases, with a clear and smooth edge. The long to short diameter ratio was 1.01 ± 0.15. All of the benign cases had obvious enhancement, with homogeneous enhancement in ten cases and heterogeneous enhancement in ten cases, as well as central filling enhancement in 12 cases. The ratio of CT value of lesion to abdominal aorta in arterial phase and venous phase were (0.41 ± 0.11) and (0.81 ± 0.20), which were significantly higher than GST and heterotopic pancreas. The irregular mass broke through the gastric wall and invaded liver with poorly defined boundary and internal necrosis, heterogeneous persistent moderate enhancement with thickening blood supply arteries was seen in one malignant case with a long diameter of 150 mm and a thick diameter of 30 mm.

Conclusions: CT enhancement usually shows persistent obvious enhancement, especially in arterial phase, which provides important value for the diagnosis. CT findings can help in the differential diagnosis of GGT and other submucosal tumors.

Keywords: Differential diagnosis; Gastric; Glomus tumor; Tomography; X-ray computed.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Diagnosis, Differential
  • Female
  • Glomus Tumor* / diagnostic imaging
  • Glomus Tumor* / pathology
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Pancreas / diagnostic imaging
  • Pancreas / pathology
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Stomach Neoplasms* / diagnostic imaging
  • Stomach Neoplasms* / pathology
  • Tomography, X-Ray Computed / methods