Primary small cell carcinoma of the esophagus – An eight year retrospective study

Bhavna Nayal, Geetha Vasudevan, Anuradha C.K. Rao, Ranjini Kudva, Manna Valliathan, Mary Mathew, Lakshmi Rao

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18 Citations (Scopus)


Introduction: Primary small cell carcinoma of the esophagus is a rare and aggressive tumor. Patients present with metastatic disease and have a poor clinical outcome. The objective of the study was to correlate clinical and histopathological features of primary small cell carcinoma of the esophagus diagnosed and treated at our hospital. Materials and Methods: A retrospective study of 11 patients diagnosed with primary small cell carcinoma of the esophagus in Kasturba Hospital, Manipal between 2006 and 2014 was done. The histopathological and immunohistochemical features were correlated with clinical and endoscopic findings. Results: Eleven patients were diagnosed to have small cell carcinoma of esophagus with a male preponderance. Common presenting symptoms were dysphagia and weight loss. Majority of the patients showed mid esophageal ulceroproliferative growth. Biopsy findings were consistent with the characteristic morphology of small cell carcinoma and demonstrated immunoreactivity to neuroendocrine markers. In addition, few cases also showed adjacent squamous dysplasia/carcinoma. Most of the patients presented with metastatic disease, liver being the most common site. These patients were treated by chemotherapy and radiotherapy. Conclusion: Esophageal small cell carcinomas are aggressive tumors with high rates of distant metastasis. Presence of squamous dysplasia /squamous cell carcinoma in the adjacent mucosa supports the hypothesis that this neoplasm arise from pleuripotent stem cells. Presence of the latter is also useful to rule out spread from lung primary.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)EC04-EC06
JournalJournal of Clinical and Diagnostic Research
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 01-05-2015

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Clinical Biochemistry


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