Glycogen pseudoground glass change in hepatocytes

Joshua Wisell, John Boitnott, Mark Haas, Robert A. Anders, John Hart, Jason T. Lewis, Susan C. Abraham, Michael Torbenson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

33 Scopus citations


Ground glass cytoplasmic change in hepatocytes is typically associated with chronic hepatitis B infection. We report 12 cases of glycogen pseudoground glass change that closely mimics hepatitis B inclusions. Nine individuals were immunosuppressed secondary to liver or kidney transplant (N=3), bone marrow transplant (N=2), HIV infection (N=2), kidney dialysis (N=1), or chronic inflammatory bowel disease (N=1). Medication history was available in 10 individuals and all were on multiple medications (range 2 to 33). Histologically, the pseudoground glass change was identical to the ground glass change seen in chronic hepatitis B infection, with distinct, circumscribed, gray-glassy inclusions surrounded by a rim of cytoplasm. The background livers showed mild or no inflammation and mild or no fibrosis. All cases were negative for chronic hepatitis B infection. The pseudoground glass change was PAS positive and diastase sensitive. Electron microscopy of the inclusions showed glycogen in 3/3 cases. No evidence for viral particles or significant endoplasmic reticulum proliferation was seen. Three cases had follow-up biopsies (1, 1, and 36 mo), and the pseudoground glass was persistent in 2 cases and showed partial resolution in 1 case (1 mo biopsy interval). We conclude that glycogen pseudoground glass change is typically seen in immunosuppressed individuals on numerous medications. The changes are generally seen in the background of mild chronic hepatitis with mild or no fibrosis. Glycogen pseudoground glass change can resolve, but may also persist for years.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1085-1090
Number of pages6
JournalAmerican Journal of Surgical Pathology
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 1 2006


  • Glycogen
  • Ground glass cytoplasm
  • Hepatitis B
  • Hepatocytes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Anatomy
  • Surgery
  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine


Dive into the research topics of 'Glycogen pseudoground glass change in hepatocytes'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this