Stipple sign (transitional cell carcinoma)

A.Prof Frank Gaillard et al.

The stipple sign refers to the pointillistic end-on appearance on intravenous pyelography or retrograde pyelography of contrast material tracking into the interstices of a papillary lesion. Because the majority of transitional cell carcinomas (TCC) have a papillary configuration, the presence of this sign should raise the suspicion of TCC. While the stipple sign is best seen in large papillary bladder tumors, it can occur anywhere a urothelial tumor expresses papillary architecture.

Be aware, however, that the stipple sign may also be seen with blood clots and fungus balls, and is not pathognomonic for TCC.

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Article information

rID: 2089
Section: Signs
Synonyms or Alternate Spellings:

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    Pointillistic technique : "Grande Jatte" by G Seurat
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