Liposarcomas in young patients: A study of 82 cases occurring in patients younger than 22 years of age

Rita Alaggio, Cheryl M. Coffin, Sharon W. Weiss, Julia A. Bridge, Josephine Issakov, Andre M. Oliveira, Andrew L. Folpe

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Liposarcomas typically occur in middle aged to older adults. Altogether, approximately 50 bona fide liposarcomas have been reported in children and adolescents, most of which have represented myxoid liposarcomas, with a good prognosis. We undertook a retrospective study of 82 liposarcomas occurring in patients below 22 years of age. Clinicopathologic and follow-up information was obtained. Fluorescence in situ hybridization for FUS, EWSR1, CHOP (DDIT3), and MDM2 was performed in 30 cases. The tumors occurred in 28 males and 54 females (5 to 22y of age) and involved many locations. Fifty-six cases were typical myxoid liposarcomas, including 2 with round cell areas. The tumors were grade 1 (56 cases) and grade 3 (2 cases). Thirty-seven of 38 patients with follow-up are alive without disease and 1 is alive with disease (median 59mo follow-up duration, range: 8 to 108mo). Six cases showed myxoid liposarcoma with spindled growth ("spindle cell myxoid liposarcoma"); these arose in 5 females and 1 male (median age 14y) and involved the thigh in 40% of cases. All were grade 1. Follow-up (4 of 6 patients) showed local recurrences in 2 cases and metastases in 1 case. Twelve tumors consisted of conventional myxoid liposarcoma and pleomorphic liposarcoma ("pleomorphic myxoid liposarcoma"); these arose in 4 males and 8 females (10 to 22y of age) and often involved the mediastinum. Tumor grades were 2 (4 cases) and 3 (8 cases). Follow-up (10 patients) showed 7 dead of disease, 1 alive with disease, and 2 disease free. Four atypical lipomatous tumors were seen including 2 with low-grade dedifferentiation. Two local recurrences were seen; all patients are disease free. Two conventional pleomorphic liposarcomas were seen; 1 patient with follow-up is disease free. FUS-CHOP and EWSR1-CHOP rearrangements were identified by fluorescence in situ hybridization in 15/23 and 2/23 conventional myxoid liposarcomas, respectively, and in no other tumors. Amplification for MDM2 was absent in all cases. We conclude that conventional myxoid liposarcoma is by far the most common subtype of liposarcoma in young patients, with an excellent prognosis. Two apparently novel subtypes of liposarcoma, termed pleomorphic myxoid liposarcoma and spindle cell myxoid liposarcoma comprise considerable percentages of liposarcomas in this age group and should be distinguished from conventional myxoid liposarcoma and conventional pleomorphic liposarcoma. Pleomorphic myxoid liposarcoma and spindle cell myxoid liposarcoma most likely represent high-grade and low-grade variants of myxoid liposarcoma, respectively. Additional study of such cases will be necessary for definitive classification.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)645-658
Number of pages14
JournalAmerican Journal of Surgical Pathology
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 2009
Externally publishedYes


  • FISH
  • Liposarcoma
  • Pediatric tumors


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