50. Planocellular carcinoma of the lung

Page created on December 4, 2018. Last updated on January 17, 2019 at 17:26

Staining: HE

Organ: Bronchus


We can see cartilage and respiratory epithelium, so we know that this is a bronchus.

We can divide the slide into 5 “parts”:

  • 1 shows normal, healthy respiratory epithelium
  • 2 shows goblet cell hyperplasia and basal cell hyperplasia
  • 3 shows squamous cell metaplasia
  • 4 shows squamous cell dysplasia and carcinoma in situ
  • 5, which is the majority of the slide, shows the invasive carcinoma

The carcinoma cells show pleomorphism and mitotic figures and giant cells are present.

Diagnosis: Squamous cell lung carcinoma


  • Smoking


Squamous cell carcinoma in the lung usually occurs centrally, around the hilum. It shows symptoms earlier than adenocarcinomas and large cell carcinomas, which grow peripherally. However, also because of the central location is surgical removal of squamous cell carcinomas more difficult than for the peripheral-growing cancers.

In this slide we can see several stages of cancer development, from hyperplasia to metaplasia to dysplasia to cancer.

It can metastasize into pericardium, mediastinum, aorta and even the heart.

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