Alveolar rhabdomyosarcoma

Last revised by Dr Joshua Yap on 13 Oct 2022

Alveolar rhabdomyosarcomas are a type of rhabdomyosarcoma and account for 20-40% of all rhabdomyosarcomas 1,2.

Unlike embryonal rhabdomyosarcomas, which are more common, these tumors occur in slightly older individuals, typically 10-25 years of age 1

Although these tumors can be found essentially anywhere, they are more frequently situated in the deep compartments of the extremities 1,2.

Specific genetic abnormalities in alveolar rhabdomyosarcomas have been identified. They include t(2;13) and t(1;13) chromosomal translocations resulting in PAX3-FKHR and PAX7-FKHR gene fusions 2.

Compared to the other two types (embryonal and pleomorphic rhabdomyosarcomas), it has the worst prognosis 1.

The features are non-specific (see radiographic features in the parent article: rhabdomyosarcoma), although in general alveolar rhabdomyosarcomas tend to have multiple areas of necrosis 1.

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Cases and figures

  • Case 1
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  • Case 2: of parotid duct
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  • Case 3: of the foot
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