Johns Hopkins Pathology
See Table Form
1. What is the patient's gender?
Some cystic neoplasms, including mucinous cystic neoplasms and solid-pseudopapillary neoplasms, are much more common in women. Pseudocysts, because of there association with alcoholism, tend to be more common in men.

2. Do the cysts communicate with the large pancreatic ducts?
This feature can help distinguish intraductal papillary mucinous neoplasms, which do communicate with the ducts, from mucinous cystic neoplasms, which do not.

3. What are the cyst contents?
The cysts of mucinous cystic neoplasms and intraductal papillary neoplasms contain thick tenacious mucoid material. The cysts of serous cystic neoplasms, as the name suggests, contain thin straw colored fluid. Pseudocysts and solid-pseudopapillary neoplasms can contain necrotic/hemorrhagic debris.

4. What type of cells, if any, line the cysts?
Pseudocysts lack an epithelial lining. Mucinous cystic neoplasms and intraductal papillary neoplasms are lined by tall columnar mucin-producing cells. Serous cystic neoplasms are lined by low cuboidal glycogen-rich cells.

5. What is the character of the stroma?
Mucinous cystic neoplasms have a distinctive "ovarian-type" of dense stroma. The often cystic lesions do not.

© Copyright 2003 All Rights Reserved Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions