Nasal cavity, paranasal sinuses, nasopharynx
Other tumors
Glial heterotopia

Author: Nat Pernick, M.D. (see Authors page)

Revised: 23 May 2018, last major update November 2004

Copyright: (c) 2004-2018,, Inc.

PubMed Search: Glial heterotopia nasal

Cite this page: Pernick, N. Glial heterotopia. website. Accessed October 17th, 2018.
Definition / general
  • Also called nasal glioma
  • Not a true neoplasm but a malformation that cause tumor-like conditions in newborns and older infants; considered a variant of encephalocele (encephalocele is associated with bony defects, glial heterotopia is not)
  • Usually present at birth or clinically evident within a few years of birth
  • 60% occur in nasal subcutaneous tissue, 30% in nasal cavity, 10% mixed
  • 20% have small fibrous or glial attachment to CNS
Case reports
  • Excision
Microscopic (histologic) description
  • Mature astrocytes, gliosis and variable stromal fibrosis
  • Occasional multinucleated giant cells resembling neurons
  • Variable gemistocytic or mildly atypical astrocytes
  • Usually no neuronal cells
Microscopic (histologic) images

Images hosted on other servers:

Left: alternating dense collagenous tissue and disorganized
cells with ovoid / irregular nuclei and fibrillary stroma
Right: Masson trichrome stain emphasizes pattern
Inset: GFAP+

Positive stains