CNS tumor
Meningeal tumors
Rhabdoid meningioma

Topic Completed: 1 March 2014

Minor changes: 12 December 2019

Revised: 2 January 2019, last major update March 2014

Copyright: (c) 2002-2017,, Inc.

PubMed Search: Rhabdoid meningioma [title]

Jesse L. Kresak, M.D.
Anthony T. Yachnis, M.D.
Page views in 2019: 2,136
Page views in 2020 to date: 1,036
Cite this page: Kresak J. Rhabdoid meningioma. website. Accessed May 30th, 2020.
Definition / general
  • WHO grade III due to aggressive behavior and metastatic potential
  • High rate of recurrence
  • Rhabdoid morphology may increase with recurrences
  • May be supratentorial, infratentorial or spinal
Radiology description
  • MRI may show irregular tumor borders, cystic component, heterogenous tumoral enhancement and peritumoral edema suggesting a high grade meningioma (AJNR Am J Neuroradiol 2007;28:1462)
Radiology images

Images hosted on other servers:

Marked enhancing mass at left frontal lobe

Hyperostosis, bony erosion in right anterior clinoid process

Tumor in right infratemporal fossa

Lesion was isointense on T1 and T2 weighted images

Avidly enhancing, complex falcine meningioma

Case reports
Gross description
  • Dural based
  • May be well circumscribed or readily adherent to brain parenchyma
  • Size can vary
Microscopic (histologic) description
  • Sheets of loosely cohesive cells with eccentric nuclei and hyaline, paranuclear inclusions
  • Nuclei may show pleomorphism, with vesicular chromatin and prominent nucleoli
  • May retain meningothelial features including whorl formation and nuclear pseudoinclusions
  • May have brain invasion
  • Often increased mitotic activity (greater than 4/10 HP)
  • May have papillary features
Microscopic (histologic) images

Images hosted on other servers:

Sheet-like, no whorls

Rhabdoid cells

Rhabdoid cells break through arachnoid plane

Microvascular proliferation

Pseudopalisading necrosis



Various images

Cytology description
  • Rhabdoid cells with abundant eosinophilic cytoplasm, cytoplasmic hyaline inclusions, eccentric nuclei
  • Stout processes consistent with meningioma; however distinct cell borders
  • Often vesicular nuclei with prominent nucleoli
  • May see mitoses on smear
  • May see pseudonuclear inclusions (Diagn Cytopathol 2010;38:594)
Cytology images

Images hosted on other servers:

Squash prep 40x

Positive stains
Negative stains
Electron microscopy description
  • Cytoplasmic whorls of intermediate filaments often entrapping lysosomes or other organelles
  • Interdigitating cell membranes and intercellular junctions
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