Giant cell carcinoma of the lung

Last revised by Bruno Di Muzio on 30 Jun 2020

Giant cell carcinomas of the lung are a rare type of non-small cell lung carcinomas (NSCLC) classified under sarcomatoid carcinomas of the lungs.

They represent less than 0.5% of all NSCLC 2. There is a recognized association with smoking 1

Symptoms are non-specific and, like other types of lung malignancies, may include cough, hemoptysis, chest pain, dyspnea, and weight loss. 

Giant cell carcinomas often present with peripheral neutrophilia and fever related to the production of granulocyte colony-stimulating factor (G-CSF) 3

As all the sarcomatoid carcinomas of the lung, diagnosis cannot be achieved on biopsy samples. Giant cell carcinomas are composed mostly of malignant giant cells, without differentiated carcinomatous elements 4

There are no published specific imaging features for this histological subtype of lung cancer.  

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