Selected Case From the Arkadi M. Rywlin International Pathology Slide Club: Peritoneal Lipofuscinosis and Deciduosis in Pregnancy

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Peritoneal lipofuscinosis is a very rarely recognized condition occurring during pregnancy characterized by brown pigmentation of the omentum and peritoneum, a decidual reaction and benign mesothelial cells. The iron negative pigment, which is likely to be confused with hemosiderin in the hematoxylin and eosin stain, is lipofuscin. The seminar case, apparently the third published, arose in a 37-year-old woman who presented in October 2015 at 24 weeks pregnancy with abdominal pain. Investigations revealed a ruptured left ovarian cyst and rising serum carcinoembryonic antige levels. At laparotomy, there was no free intraperitoneal blood but the omentum and uterine serosa were black. Histology showed lipofuscinosis and a decidual reaction. The patient delivered a normal baby in February 2016 and was clinically well after delivery. A left ovarian endometriotic cyst was removed in February 2017. The patient made a good recovery with no clinically apparent symptoms from the liposuscinosis. We postulate that the endometriotic cyst had ruptured and released blood into the peritoneal cavity in 2015. The iron from the red cells breakdown was then rapidly resorbed because of the pregnancy requirements for iron, leaving lipofuscin in peritoneal macrophages.

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