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Cytology of chordoid meningioma: a series of five cases with emphasis on differential diagnoses
  1. Philip C W Lui1,
  2. Tony K F Chau2,
  3. Steve S Wong3,
  4. Patrick P L Lau4,
  5. Gary M K Tse1,
  6. Teresa M M Thomas4,
  7. Ho Keung Ng1
  1. 1Department of Anatomical and Cellular Pathology, Prince of Wales Hospital, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Shatin, Hong Kong
  2. 2Department of Pathology, Tseung Kwan O Hospital, Tseung Kwan O, Hong Kong
  3. 3Department of Pathology, Princess Margaret Hospital, Kwai Chung, Hong Kong
  4. 4Department of Pathology, Kwong Wah Hospital, Kowloon, Hong Kong
  1. Correspondence to:
    Dr P C W Lui
    Department of Anatomical and Cellular Pathology, Prince of Wales Hospital, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Shatin, Hong Kong; philiplui{at}


Background: Chordoid meningioma is a rare meningioma variant characterised by epithelioid cord-like tumour cells in a myxoid stroma. It is classified as grade II (World Health Organization) tumours, as they have a tendency to behave more aggressively than traditional meningiomas and have a greater likelihood of recurrence.

Aims: To report the features of intraoperative imprint smears of five cases of chordoid meningioma.

Methods: The intraoperative squash smears were reviewed for cellularity, cellular atypia, mitotic figure, cytoplasmic vacuolation, intranuclear inclusion, presence of a cohesive cord of tumour cells, whorl-like structure, psammoma bodies, chronic inflammatory cells (lymphocytes and plasma cells), background mucin and necrosis.

Results: All cases were of moderate to high cellularity, with cohesive cords of bland tumour cells possessing uniformly round nuclei with smooth nuclear outline, stippled chromatin and small nucleoli, with cytoplasmic vacuolation and chronic inflammatory cells in the background. Intranuclear inclusions (80%) and whorl-like structures (60%) were also common. Necrotic background, psammoma bodies or mitotic figures were consistently absent.

Conclusions: The cytological features of chordoid mengiomas are distinctive, and intraoperative imprint diagnosis is feasible.

  • WHO, World Health Organization

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  • Published Online First 12 July 2006

  • Competing interests: None declared.