Case Report
Copyright ©The Author(s) 2022. Published by Baishideng Publishing Group Inc. All rights reserved.
World J Clin Cases. Mar 26, 2022; 10(9): 2938-2947
Published online Mar 26, 2022. doi: 10.12998/wjcc.v10.i9.2938
Esophageal myoepithelial carcinoma: Four case reports
Hao Lu, Hui-Ping Zhao, Yi-Yang Liu, Juan Yu, Rui Wang, Jian-Bo Gao
Hao Lu, Hui-Ping Zhao, Yi-Yang Liu, Juan Yu, Rui Wang, Jian-Bo Gao, Department of Radiology, The First Affiliated Hospital of Zhengzhou University, Zhengzhou 450052, Henan Province, China
Author contributions: Lu H participated in manuscript preparation, literature research, and data analysis; Zhao HP participated in literature research and data analysis; Liu YY participated in literature research and data analysis; Yu J participated in imaging data collection; Wang R participated in guidance of imaging knowledge; Gao JB participated in manuscript review and guarantor of integrity of the entire study; all authors have read and approved the final manuscript.
Informed consent statement: Informed written consent was obtained from the patient for publication of this report and any accompanying images.
Conflict-of-interest statement: The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.
CARE Checklist (2016) statement: The authors have read the CARE Checklist (2016), and the manuscript was prepared and revised according to the CARE Checklist (2016).
Open-Access: This article is an open-access article that was selected by an in-house editor and fully peer-reviewed by external reviewers. It is distributed in accordance with the Creative Commons Attribution NonCommercial (CC BY-NC 4.0) license, which permits others to distribute, remix, adapt, build upon this work non-commercially, and license their derivative works on different terms, provided the original work is properly cited and the use is non-commercial. See:
Corresponding author: Jian-Bo Gao, MD, PhD, Professor, Department of Radiology, The First Affiliated Hospital of Zhengzhou University, No. 1 East Jianshe Road, Erqi District, Zhengzhou 450052, Henan Province, China.
Received: October 13, 2021
Peer-review started: October 13, 2021
First decision: December 3, 2021
Revised: December 18, 2021
Accepted: February 15, 2022
Article in press: February 15, 2022
Published online: March 26, 2022

Myoepithelial carcinoma (MC) is a rare malignant neoplasm that mainly occurs in the salivary gland. MC can be confused with many other tumors when arising outside the salivary glands because it presents with a wide spectrum of cytomorphological and immunohistochemical features. To the best of our knowledge, esophageal MC has not been previously reported. The purpose of this study was to describe the imaging and clinicopathological features of esophageal MC to improve the understanding of the disease.


Three men and one woman diagnosed with esophageal MC were enrolled in this study. The primary clinical symptom was dysphagia. The mass was mainly located in the middle esophagus. Laboratory tests revealed that two patients who underwent tumor abnormal protein were positive. Radical resection was performed for all patients with no adjuvant therapy. Hematoxylin-eosin staining showed infiltrative growth of epithelial cells with hyperchromatic and pleomorphic nuclei toward the periphery. Immunohistochemistry showed that all patients were positive for P63, and most patients were positive for SOX-10, AE1/AE3, P40, and calponin. The Ki-67 values were all higher than 60%. Patient one died one month after discharge from an unknown cause. Patient two lost to follow-up. At patient three’s four-month review, enhanced computed tomography (CT) showed anastomosis recurrence and bilateral lung metastases. He abandoned treatment and lost to follow-up. Patient four attended review appointments regularly and remained in a good general condition.


Here, we present the first report of esophageal MC and review the relevant literature. Esophageal MC is more likely to occur in the middle esophagus in older patients with male dominance. A fungating type observed on CT scanning may help narrow down the differential diagnosis. Cystic change or necrosis may occur in larger lesions. The final diagnosis should be made according to the pathological examination. The treatment for MC is surgical resection, and the efficacy of chemotherapy needs to be determined with future studies.

Keywords: Myoepithelial carcinoma, Esophagus, Computed tomography, Diagnosis, Immunohistochemistry, Prognostic, Case report

Core Tip: Esophageal myoepithelial carcinoma is an aggressive malignancy that has not been reported. In this study, we describe the clinical, pathological, immunohistochemical, and imaging findings of four patients with esophageal myoepithelial carcinoma (MC) and report their outcomes. Deepening the understanding of esophageal MC can help us narrow down the differential diagnosis and aid clinical decisions.