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Resident's Page: Pathology
February 1998

Pathologic Quiz Case 2

Author Affiliations


Arch Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 1998;124(2):221. doi:10.1001/archotol.124.2.218

Neuroendocrine tumors of the larynx are not common, and the nature and management of these lesions remain puzzling for pathologists and surgeons alike. The qualifier neuroendocrine refers to a particular phenotype expressed by certain neoplasms. This phenotype includes argyrophilic cytoplasmic granules, immunohistochemical staining for neuroendocrine markers, and ultrastructural evidence of membrane-bound neurosecretory granules. The neuroendocrine phenotype is not unique to a single specific tumor type. Rather, neuroendocrine tumors represent a diverse group of tumors that may be quite variable with respect to morphological features and patterns of clinical behavior. For example, neuroendocrine tumors of the lung encompass both the indolent carcinoid tumor and the rapidly fatal small cell carcinoma. As a diagnostic term, neuroendocrine tumor is too broad to be of practical use.

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