Pediatric hepatic vascular tumors: clinicopathologic characteristics of 33 cases and proposed updates to current classification schemes

Lara Berklite*, Faizan Malik, Sarangarajan Ranganathan, Anita Gupta

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Pediatric hepatic vascular tumors (HVTs) are rare neoplasms with features distinct from their cutaneous counterparts. Their behavior ranges from benign to malignant, with each subtype having therapeutic differences. Histopathologic descriptions of large cohorts are scarce in the literature. Thirty-three putative HVTs diagnosed from 1970 to 2021 were retrieved. All available clinical and pathologic materials were reviewed. Lesions were reclassified according to the World Health Organization (WHO) classification of pediatric tumors [1] as hepatic congenital hemangioma (HCH; n = 13), hepatic infantile hemangioma (HIH; n = 10), hepatic angiosarcoma (HA; n = 3), and hepatic epithelioid hemangioendothelioma (HEH; n = 1). Vascular malformations (n = 5) or vascular-dominant mesenchymal hamartoma (n = 1) were excluded. HCH frequently showed involutional changes, whereas HIH often had anastomosing channels and pseudopapillae formation. HA had solid areas with epithelioid and/or spindled endothelial morphology, significant atypia, increased mitoses, high proliferation index, and occasionally necrosis. On morphology analysis, a subset of HIH showed features worrisome for progression to HA including solid glomeruloid proliferation, increased mitoses, and epithelioid morphology. The widely metastatic and fatal HEH was observed in a 5-year-old male with multiple liver lesions. Immunohistochemically, HIHs and HA were Glucose transporter isoform 1 (GLUT-1) positive. One HIH patient died from postoperative complications, whereas 3 are alive without disease. Five HCH patients are alive and well. Two of three HA patients died of disease, and 1 is alive without recurrence. To our knowledge, this is the largest series of pediatric HVTs reviewing clinicopathologic features based on current Pediatric WHO nomenclature [1]. We highlight diagnostic challenges and propose inclusion of an intermediate category between HIH and HA which warrants closer follow-up.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)78-89
Number of pages12
JournalHuman pathology
StatePublished - Nov 2023


  • Angiosarcoma
  • Congenital hemangioma
  • Hemangoendothelioma
  • Infantile hemangioma
  • Liver
  • Vascular tumors

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine


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