Cystic lesions
Bronchogenic cyst

Topic Completed: 1 December 2012

Minor changes: 4 December 2019

Copyright: 2003-2019,, Inc.

PubMed Search: Bronchogenic cyst[TI] mediastinum

Hanni Gulwani, M.B.B.S.
Page views in 2019: 4,396
Page views in 2020 to date: 1,642
Cite this page: Gulwani H. Bronchogenic cyst. website. Accessed May 28th, 2020.
Definition / general
  • Due to developmental defect from fusion of tracheoesophageal septum
  • Along tracheobronchial tree, usually posterior to carina
  • Usually asymptomatic
  • Childhood or middle life
Clinical features
  • Usually symptomatic at diagnosis, complete excision is curative (Lung 2008;186:55)
Radiology description
  • Round / oval mass that molds to adjacent structures
  • Wall may contain linear calcifications
  • May have independent vascular supply
Case reports
  • 30 year old man with bronchogenic cyst presenting as a thyroid mass (Head Neck Pathol 2011;5:416)
  • 41 year old woman with carcinoid tumor arising in a thymic bronchogenic cyst associated with thymic follicular hyperplasia (Pathol Int 2012;62:49)
Clinical images

Images hosted on other servers:

round cyst behind
descending aorta

Gross description
  • Unilocular or multilocular with internal septation; contain viscous or turbid fluid
Microscopic (histologic) description
  • Resemble normal bronchi
  • Lined by respiratory type epithelium (pseudostratified columnar, often ciliated) with underlying fascicles of smooth muscle and mature cartilage
  • No cholesterol granulomas
  • May have extensive squamous metaplasia
Microscopic (histologic) images

Images hosted on other servers:

Cyst wall with respiratory epithelium

Cyst lining has
ciliated columnar

Bronchial type seromucinous glands beneath epithelium

Differential diagnosis
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