Renal epithelioid angiomyolipoma: a study of six cases and a meta-analytic study. Development of criteria for screening the entity with prognostic significance


Dr K T Mai, Anatomical Pathology, The Ottawa Hospital, 501 Smyth Road, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada K1H 8L6. e-mail:


Aims:  Renal epithelioid angiomyolipoma (EAML) is only described in case reports or in multi-institutional small series. The aim was to report cases seen at our institution and to perform a meta-analysis based on a literature review.

Methods and results:  Six EAML cases seen at our institution were reviewed and a meta-analysis performed using cases retrieved from a literature review. There were a total of 69 cases for review. The male:female ratio was 1:3. In the absence of areas of typical AML, useful features in distinguishing EAML from epithelial renal neoplasms include: extreme degree of cytological atypia, histiocytoid appearance, presence of melanocytic pigments, solid architecture with the absence of frequent areas of alveolar pattern, tubulo-papillary formation and scarring. A fatal outcome, distant or lymph node metastasis, venous invasion and local recurrence were considered as adverse events and occurred in 40% of cases over a period of follow-up of 3–60 months (mean 22.5 ± 18 months). Tumours with an unfavourable outcome showing marked cytological atypia and extensive tumour necrosis were larger (135 ± 43 mm) than those with a favourable outcome (79 ± 50 mm) (P < 0.002), and predominantly occurred in men.

Conclusions:  Renal neoplasms with certain unusual features should be investigated immunohistochemically to rule out the possibility of EAML. The frequency of adverse outcome is lower in EAML than in renal cell carcinoma.