Tumors of the head and neck are extremely diverse and a subset are poorly differentiated and difficult to classify. Recently, a new entity has been described with rhabdoid and/or plasmacytoid cytologic features and a characteristic genetic signature—inactivation of the SMARCB1 (INI-1) tumor suppressor gene. To date, only 16 cases of SMARCB1 (INI-1) deficient sinonasal carcinoma have been described, and there are currently no reports of the cytopathologic features by fine needle aspiration (FNA) cytology. A case of a 77-year-old man who presented with a posterior ethmoid sinus lesion with invasion into the skull base and bone was reported. FNA cytology of a right retropharyngeal lymph node revealed relatively monomorphic, loosely cohesive clusters of plasmacytoid cells with occasional nucleoli, rare intranuclear cytoplasmic inclusions, and mitotic figures in a background of necrosis and absence of overt squamous or glandular differentiation. A diagnosis of metastatic myoepithelial carcinoma was made; however, retrospectively, the surgical excision showed loss of the SMARCB1 (INI-1) tumor suppressor gene by immunohistochemistry. In summary, the cytomorphologic features of SMARCB1 (INI-1) deficient sinonasal carcinoma are relatively nonspecific and overlap with other regional tumors, including myoepithelial neoplasms. As a result, this entity should be considered in the differential diagnosis for a plasmacytoid tumor arising in the sinonasal tract by FNA cytology. Diagn.
- fine needle aspiration
- sinonasal carcinoma
- SMARCB1 (INI1)
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pathology and Forensic Medicine