October 21, 1988

Prostatic Crystalloids

Author Affiliations

Mobile, Ala

Mobile, Ala

JAMA. 1988;260(15):2287. doi:10.1001/jama.1988.03410150135048

Intraluminal crystalline structures having distinctive morphological characteristics were noted by Holmes1 in 1977 in association with prostatic adenocarcinoma. In her series of 335 cases, she found these crystalloids in 23%. The structures were almost exclusively confined to malignant glands and were not seen in benign prostates. A study by Jensen et al2 and a subsequent study by Ro et al3 found crystalloids in approximately 10% of cases of prostate cancer, suggesting that Holmes' 23% was an overestimation. These differences, however, are probably related to sampling, since recent investigations using whole-organ tissue sections revealed crystalloids in the majority of cases of prostatic adenocarcinoma.4 Although most commonly seen in well-differentiated neoplasms, prostatic crystalloids have been noted in metastatic sites.5 They have also been found in fine-needle aspirates of the prostate (G. F. Worsham, MD, B. W. Kellough, MD; B. S. Collins, MD, unpublished data, 1987).

The significance