Limited Reporting of Histopathologic Details in a Multi-Institutional Academic Cohort of Phyllodes Tumors: Time for Standardization

Laura H. Rosenberger, Liza M. Quintana, Samantha M. Thomas, Suniti N. Nimbkar, Tina J. Hieken, Kandice K. Ludwig, Lisa K. Jacobs, Megan E. Miller, Kristalyn K. Gallagher, Jasmine Wong, Heather B. Neuman, Jennifer Tseng, Taryn E. Hassinger, Tari A. King, James W. Jakub, Rex C. Bentley, Stuart J. Schnitt

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Phyllodes tumors are rare fibroepithelial neoplasms that are classified by tiered histopathologic features. While there are protocols for the reporting of cancer specimens, no standardized reporting protocol exists for phyllodes. Methods: We performed an 11-institution contemporary review of phyllodes tumors. Granular histopathologic details were recorded, including the features specifically considered for phyllodes grade classification. Results: Of 550 patients, median tumor size was 3.0 cm, 68.9% (n = 379) of tumors were benign, 19.6% (n = 108) were borderline, and 10.5% (n = 58) were malignant. All cases reported the final tumor size and grade classification. Complete pathologic reporting of all histopathologic features was present in 15.3% (n = 84) of cases, while an additional 35.6% (n = 196) were missing only one or two features in the report. Individual details regarding the degree of stromal cellularity was not reported in 53.5% (n = 294) of cases, degree of stromal atypia in 58.0% (n = 319) of cases, presence of stromal overgrowth in 56.2% (n = 309) of cases, stromal cell mitoses in 37.5% (n = 206) of cases, and tumor border in 54.2% (n = 298) of cases. The final margin status (negative vs. positive) was omitted in only 0.9% of cases, and the final negative margin width was specifically reported in 73.8% of cases. Reporting of details was similar across all sites. Conclusion: In this academic cohort of phyllodes tumors, one or more histopathologic features were frequently omitted from the pathology report. While all features were considered by the pathologist for grading, this limited reporting reflects a lack of reporting consensus. We recommend that standardized reporting in the form of a synoptic-style cancer protocol be implemented for phyllodes tumors, similar to other rare tumors.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)7404-7409
Number of pages6
JournalAnnals of surgical oncology
Issue number12
StatePublished - Nov 2021

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Oncology


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