Primitive neuroectodermal tumor of the median nerve: Case report with cytogenetic analysis

Edward W. Akeyson, Ian E. Mccutcheon, Mark A. Pershouse, Peter A. Steck, Gregory N. Fuller

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The authors describe a malignant peripheral primitive neuroectodermal tumor (PNET) that originated in the median nerve in an elderly adult. After the diagnosis was made by biopsy, the patient underwent radical local resection with interpositional vein grafting of the brachial artery. The tumor had the typical appearance of a primitive neural tumor with small, round cells forming rosettes. It stained positively for both the Ewing's sarcoma/peripheral PNET antigen (HBA-71) and neuron-specific enolase, confirming its neural origin. Ultrastructural examination revealed dense core granules and suggested neural differentiation of the neoplasm. Cytogenetic analysis suggested a chromosome (11;22) translocation typical of peripheral PNET. Early reports consisted of tumors arising solely in peripheral nerves, but recent series have focused mainly on tumors arising in the soft tissues other than nerves. There are no other cases of true PNET of peripheral nerve in the modern literature that have been fully characterized by immunohistochemical, ultrastructural, and cytogenetic criteria. Although peripheral PNETs occur more commonly in children, this unusual neoplasm should be considered in the differential diagnosis of peripheral nerve neoplasms in adults. Early diagnosis is desirable because of its aggressive nature and poor outcome.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)163-169
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Neurosurgery
Volume85
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jul 1996

Keywords

  • chromosomal translocation
  • HBA-71 antigen
  • peripheral nerve
  • primitive neuroectodermal tumor

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