Lung carcinomas composed of rhabdoid cells

Eur J Surg Oncol. 1997 Oct;23(5):432-4. doi: 10.1016/s0748-7983(97)93725-2.


Rhabdoid tumours form a distinctive morphological entity that is associated with aggressive biological behaviour. They have been described in several sites and tumour types. This paper presents three new cases of rhabdoid lung cancers. Lung cancers were analysed for the presence of cells with the rhabdoid phenotype: eccentric vesicular nuclei and abundant eosinophilic cytoplasm. Cells displaying this morphology were then subjected to immunohistochemistry and electron microscopy. The relevant clinical data on these cases were then accessed. Three cases conforming to the morphological, immunophenotypic and ultrastructural characteristics of rhabdoid cells were identified. Two of the cases were associated with foci of adenocarcinoma and the remaining case was a large cell neuroendocrine carcinoma. Two of the cases showed rapid clinical courses with the patients dying of disease within 6 months. Lung tumours with a rhabdoid phenotype are uncommon but are noteworthy because of their aggressive behaviour and, hence, poor prognosis.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Immunophenotyping
  • Lung Neoplasms / immunology
  • Lung Neoplasms / pathology*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Rhabdoid Tumor / immunology
  • Rhabdoid Tumor / pathology*