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transitional cell metaplasia of fallopian tube fimbriae

Friday 5 June 2009

Transitional cell metaplasia is a benign epithelial alteration that is a common finding in the serosa of the tube but is underrecognized in the tubal fimbriae, where it may mimic tubal intraepithelial carcinoma.

Transitional cell metaplasia of the fimbriae is a common benign finding in RRSO specimens that should not be confused with the much less common finding of tubal intraepithelial carcinoma.

Differential diagnosis

- tubal intraepithelial carcinoma (18830124)

  • Germline mutations in the hereditary breast/ovary carcinoma genes BRCA1 or BRCA2 confer increased lifetime risk for ovarian, fallopian tube, and primary peritoneal carcinoma. This risk can be minimized by prophylactic surgery.
  • Risk-reducing salpingo-oophorectomy (RRSO) provides 2 potential benefits: long-term cancer risk reduction and immediate detection of occult early carcinoma, which frequently arises in the tubal fimbriae.
  • Recognition of occult early tubal carcinoma is challenging because it is often microscopic in size and can be confined to the fimbrial epithelium without invasion.


- Transitional cell metaplasia of fallopian tube fimbriae: a potential mimic of early tubal carcinoma in risk reduction salpingo-oophorectomies from women With BRCA mutations. Rabban JT, Crawford B, Chen LM, Powell CB, Zaloudek CJ. Am J Surg Pathol. 2009 Jan;33(1):111-9. PMID: 18830124