Penis & scrotum

Squamous cell carcinoma and variants

Pseudoglandular carcinoma

Topic Completed: 1 April 2010

Minor changes: 8 April 2021

Copyright: 2002-2021,, Inc.

PubMed Search: Pseudoglandular carcinoma penis

Alcides Chaux, M.D.
Antonio L. Cubilla, M.D.
Page views in 2020: 718
Page views in 2021 to date: 671
Cite this page: Chaux A, Cubilla AL. Pseudoglandular carcinoma. website. Accessed October 24th, 2021.
Definition / general
  • Unusual and aggressive variant of penile carcinoma with pseudoglands, often filled with amorphous material
  • Also called adenoid or acantholytic carcinoma
  • Average 54 years
  • Glans, coronal sulcus and inner foreskin are usually involved
Clinical features
  • Higher metastatic rate and cancer related deaths when compared with usual SCC
Case reports
Gross description
  • Large, irregular white-gray ulcerative or exophytic masses
  • Frequent invasion of deep erectile tissues
  • Average size 4.6 cm
Microscopic (histologic) description
  • Hallmark is the pseudogland: open space lined by atypical, cubical or cylindrical uni or multistratified cells
  • Pseudoglands frequently filled with amorphous material containing debris, keratin and desquamated cells
  • Intraluminal neutrophilic microabscesses are not uncommon
  • Frequent presence of intracytoplasmic clear vacuoles, sometimes with a collaret arrangement
  • Variegated tumor aspect showing solid areas intermingled with pseudoglandular spaces
  • Frequent vascular and perineural invasion
Microscopic (histologic) images

Contributed by Alcides Chaux, M.D. and Antonio Cubilla, M.D.

Simulating glandular lumina

Irregular tumor nests


Images hosted on other servers:


Acantholysis of neoplastic squamous cells

Head and neck:

Pseudolumina are present but no true glands


Various images

Negative stains
Differential diagnosis
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