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Pelvic skeletal metastasis of hepatocellular carcinoma with sarcomatous change: a case report

Chih-Yu Chen123, Yong-Te Hsueh2, Tsung-Yu Lan2, Wei-Hsin Lin2, Karl Wu12 and Rong-Sen Yang2*

Author affiliations

1 Division of Orthopedics, Surgical Department, Far Eastern Memorial Hospital, Taipei, Taiwan

2 Department of Orthopedic Surgery, National Taiwan University & Hospital, Taipei, Taiwan

3 Department of Orthopedic Surgery, Taipei Medical University, Shuang Ho Hospital, Taipei, Taiwan

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Citation and License

Diagnostic Pathology 2010, 5:33  doi:10.1186/1746-1596-5-33

Published: 25 May 2010


Sarcomatoid hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is a very rare histologic variant of HCC. The characteristic of skeletal metastatic sarcomatoid hepatocellular carcinoma has never been reported. We reported a patient with sarcomatoid hepatocellular carcinoma pelvic metastasis who presented with huge pelvic metastasis that had relatively small osteolytic lesion centrally located accompanied by huge bipeduncular invasive expansile lesions into surrounding soft tissue. The lesion showed almost non-isotope uptake in 99mTc-methylene diphosphonate bone scintigraphy study. He underwent radiotherapy and tumor excision but the tumor rapidly recurred. In addition, serum α-fetoprotein level was never elevated beyond normal limit (< 20 ng/mL) through the whole course of treatment. We considered sarcomatoid hepatocellular carcinoma bone metastasis a highly aggressive lesion with unusual metastatic pattern. Surgical treatment with adequate safe margin in such a huge tumor with hypervascularity and extensive invasion in the pelvis was difficult; and radiotherapy maybe refractory regarding the sarcomatous nature. Therefore, debulking operation with local symptoms control may provide a better quality of life. And the clinical course suggests sarcomatoid hepatocellular carcinoma is derived from the transition of an ordinary hepatocellular carcinoma.