A case of sarcomatoid carcinoma of the thymus

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A 57-year-old woman presented with a 10 × 10 cm anterior mediastinal mass. The tumor had invaded the pericardium, both lungs and the left brachiocephalic vein, and was treated by partial resection and postoperative radiation therapy. Pathological examination of the tumor revealed squamous cell carcinoma with a spindle cell sarcomatous component. Immunohistochemically, keratin and epithelial membrane antigen were positive in both the spindle cell sarcomatous areas and the squamous cell carcinomatous area and thus, a diagnosis of thymic carcinoma of sarcomatoid type was made. The patient died of recurrent disease 1 year after surgery. This case is the seventh reported in the English literature. Because of the poor outcome, adjuvant therapy is recommended.

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