USMLE Answer 17

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17. The correct answer is E. Malignant mixed mullerian tumor is a tumor with two components, stromal and epithelial (endometrial glands), both of which are malignant. This is a rare and highly aggressive tumor that has a 25% 5-year survival rate. It usually affects older patients and presents with postmenopausal bleeding. The stromal component can contain metaplastic components such as cartilage and bone. Interestingly, usually only the epithelial component metastasizes.

Endolymphatic stromal myosis (choice A) is a type of endometrial stromal tumor of intermediate malignancy. It appears as small pieces of stroma between myometrial bundles that infiltrate lymph channels. Patients may have pain or bleeding, or may be asymptomatic. Recurrences happen late in the course of the disease (years) in 50% of patients, and metastasis occurs in 15%. There is no epithelial component, so this is an incorrect choice.

Endometrial carcinoma (choice B) is a malignancy of the epithelial glandular component of the endometrium. Abnormal bleeding is the usual presentation. High estrogen states cause this tissue to proliferate. There is no stromal component of this tumor, so this is an incorrect choice.

Endometrial stromal sarcoma (choice C) is a true sarcoma arising from the endometrial stroma that infiltrates the myometrium and invades vessels. There is no epithelial component.

Leiomyosarcoma (choice D) is a true sarcoma arising from the uterine smooth muscle. It commonly has satellite lesions within the uterus. Leiomyosarcomas usually recur after removal; survival is greater with well-differentiated lesions. Poorly differentiated lesions have a 10% to 15% 5-year survival rate. Distant metastasis is via blood vessels. There is no epithelial component.