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Distinguishing Benign Dissecting Mucin (Stromal Mucin Pools) From Invasive Mucinous Carcinoma

Molavi, Diana MD, PhD; Argani, Pedram MD

Advances in Anatomic Pathology: January 2008 - Volume 15 - Issue 1 - p 1-17
doi: 10.1097/PAP.0b013e31815e52aa
Review Articles

Mucin dissecting stroma suggests the presence of an invasive mucinous (colloid) carcinoma. However, in virtually every organ in which invasive mucinous carcinoma exists, there exist benign mimickers associated with dissecting mucin. This article reviews diagnostic criteria for the differential diagnosis of mucinous lesions of the breast, pancreas, biliary tract, colon, appendix, and bladder, emphasizing practical points, which we find helpful in daily diagnostic surgical pathology practice.

Department of Pathology, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, MD

Supported by NIH CA 88843 and Department of Defense W8IXWH-04-1-0595.

Reprints: Pedram Argani, MD, Department of Pathology, Johns Hopkins Hospital, Weinberg 2242, 401 North Broadway, Baltimore, MD 21231 (e-mail:

All figures can be viewed online incolor at

© 2008 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.