Goblet cell adenocarcinoma of the appendix: an update and practical approach to diagnosis and grading

Hum Pathol. 2023 Feb:132:183-196. doi: 10.1016/j.humpath.2022.06.002. Epub 2022 Jun 9.


Goblet cell adenocarcinoma is a rare appendiceal tumour with amphicrine differentiation that has distinct morphologic and clinical features compared to carcinomas seen elsewhere in the gastrointestinal tract. These tumors have engendered considerable confusion in the literature regarding their classification, and they have been described under several different names including goblet cell carcinoid, adenocarcinoid, and adenocarcinoma, among others. In the recent fifth edition of the World Health Organization Classification of Digestive System Tumors, goblet cell adenocarcinoma is the preferred diagnosis because of the increasing recognition of a frequent co-existing high-grade adenocarcinoma component. This review will present the clinicopathologic, molecular, and immunohistochemical features of goblet cell adenocarcinoma and discuss the current challenges in diagnosis, grading, and clinical management.

Keywords: Adenocarcinoid; Appendix; Goblet cell adenocarcinoma; Goblet cell carcinoid; Pseudomyoma peritonei; Signet ring cell carcinoma.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adenocarcinoma* / pathology
  • Appendiceal Neoplasms* / diagnosis
  • Appendiceal Neoplasms* / therapy
  • Appendix* / pathology
  • Carcinoid Tumor* / diagnosis
  • Carcinoid Tumor* / pathology
  • Goblet Cells / pathology
  • Humans