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Liver and intrahepatic bile ducts-nontumor

Developmental anomalies/cysts

von Meyenburg complex

Reviewers: Komal Arora, M.D. (see Reviewers page)
Revised: 23 April 2012, last major update April 2012
Copyright: (c) 2004-2012, PathologyOutlines.com, Inc.


● Also called bile duct hamartoma or microhamartoma
● Incidental finding in 6% of adults and 1% of children at autopsy; found in 1% of all liver needle biopsies
● No clinical significance, although may resemble liver metastases to surgeons
● A type of ductal plate malformation, due to incomplete involution of embryonic bile duct remnants
● Associated with other ductal plate malformations such as congenital hepatic fibrosis and Caroliís disease; also autosomal dominant polycystic hepatorenal disease
● Rarely associated with neoplastic transformation to hyperplasia, adenoma, cholangiocarcinoma (Am J Surg Pathol 2000;24:1131, Arch Pathol Lab Med 2000;124:1704)

Gross description

● Single or multiple (20% have 4+ nodules) well circumscribed nodules, subcapsular, gray-white, occasionally green; often less than 5 mm

Micro images

Bile duct hamartoma

Micro description

● Periportal small clusters of modestly dilated bile ducts, often angulated, in fibrous stroma
● May contain intraluminal bile
● Epithelial cells are bland
● Usually no/minimal inflammatory infiltrate, no atypia

Micro images

Periportal cluster of dilated bile ducts

Dilated bile ducts in fibrous stroma (figure 3)

Positive stains

● Mucin (variable)

End of Liver and intrahepatic bile ducts-nontumor > Developmental anomalies/cysts > von Meyenburg complex

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