Soft tissue
Skeletal muscle
Botryoid variant of embryonal rhabdomyosarcoma

Author: Nat Pernick, M.D.

Revised: 31 January 2018, last major update July 2009

Copyright: (c) 2002-2018,, Inc.

PubMed Search: Botryoid variant of embryonal rhabdomyosarcoma

Related topics: Embryonal rhabdomyosarcoma - general
Cite this page: Pernick, N. Botryoid variant of embryonal rhabdomyosarcoma. website. Accessed March 20th, 2018.
  • Named for distinctive gross features (resembles a bunch of grapes)
  • Also called sarcoma botryoides
Clinical features
  • 25% of rhabdomyosarcomas, 10% of embryonal subtype
  • Tumors are beneath mucosal membrane in walls of hollow structures (bladder, vagina, nasal cavity), extrahepatic bile ducts or near a space; rarely in eyelid or anal region
Prognosis and treatment
Gross description
  • Resembles cluster of grapes or allergic nasal polyp
  • Fleshy nodular polypoid projections of variable size into lumen
Gross images

Images hosted on PathOut server:

Clusters of edematous,
grape-like masses that
protrude into lumen of
hollow organs

Microscopic (histologic) description
  • Hypercellular zone immediately beneath epithelium (Nicholson cambium layer - resembles hypercellular zones that produce growth rings in trees)
  • Cells are undifferentiated, round or spindled with minimal cytoplasm, frequent mitotic figures
  • Less cellular in deeper layers, composed of differentiating and undifferentiated cells resembling embryonal NOS
Microscopic (histologic) images

Images hosted on PathOut server:

Polypoid or lobulated masses of
cells covered by mucosa, with underlying
hypercellular zone of poorly differentiated
cells (cambium layer)


Tumor with sheets of
round or spindle cells
resembling benign polyp
or fibroinflammatory lesion

Deep foci of hypercellularity is common with round or spindled undifferentiated cells mixed with differentiating rhabdomyoblasts


Tumor may have only focal cambium layer
and consist primarily of paucicellular
edematous tissue with scattered
undifferentiated or atypical large cells

Images hosted on other servers:

Vaginal tumor