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Ophthalmologic Manifestations of Kaposi Sarcoma Workup

  • Author: Jacqueline Freudenthal, MD; Chief Editor: Hampton Roy, Sr, MD  more...
 
Updated: Jan 08, 2015
 

Laboratory Studies

The following studies are indicated in patients with Kaposi sarcoma:

  • HIV enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay
  • HIV Western blot
  • CD4 T-lymphocyte count [19]
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Imaging Studies

Imaging studies are generally not necessary, unless orbital or disseminated Kaposi sarcoma is suspected.

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Procedures

Cutaneous or conjunctival biopsy of the lesion may be necessary for a definitive diagnosis.

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Histologic Findings

All 4 variants of Kaposi sarcoma demonstrate similar histologic findings of tissue, containing endothelium-lined vascular channels and proliferation of spindle-shaped cells surrounded by inflammatory cells. Examples of histologic findings are shown in the images below.

Section of eyelid with Kaposi sarcoma lesion under Section of eyelid with Kaposi sarcoma lesion under high magnification. This tissue section demonstrates increased angiogenesis and spindle-shaped cells. Courtesy of Ben Glasgow, MD, University of California, Los Angeles, Department of Ophthalmology, Jules Stein Eye Institute.
Section of eyelid with Kaposi sarcoma lesion under Section of eyelid with Kaposi sarcoma lesion under high magnification. This tissue section demonstrates endothelium-lined vascular channels and proliferation of spindle-shaped cells. Increased angiogenesis with erythrocyte extravasation is observed. Courtesy of Ben Glasgow, MD, University of California, Los Angeles, Department of Ophthalmology, Jules Stein Eye Institute.

Often, an increased angiogenesis with erythrocyte extravasation is present. Dugel et al described 3 histologic types of Kaposi sarcoma, which probably represents different stages along a continuum.[17]

Type I

Thin, dilated vascular channels are lined by flat endothelial cells with lumen-containing erythrocytes. The cells have flat endothelial fusiform nuclei and scanty cytoplasm. Moderate mononuclear cell infiltrate surround these abnormal vessels. No spindle cells or slit spaces are observed.

Type II

Plump, fusiform endothelial cells line thin, dilated empty vascular channels. Many of these cells have hyperchromatic nuclei. The inflammatory infiltrate of macrophages, plasma cells, and lymphocytes is sparse. Foci of a few immature spindle cells and early slit vessels are present.

Type III

Large aggregates of densely packed spindle cells with hyperchromatic nuclei, occasional mitotic figures, and abundant slit spaces often contain erythrocytes. Inflammatory cells are scant.

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Contributor Information and Disclosures
Author

Jacqueline Freudenthal, MD Co-Investigator, Ophthalmic Consultants Centre, Toronto

Jacqueline Freudenthal, MD is a member of the following medical societies: American Academy of Ophthalmology, Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology, Canadian Ophthalmological Society

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

Coauthor(s)

Kevin Ryan Yuhan, MD Attending Physician, Cornea, Cataract, Refractive and External Diseases, Southern California Permanente Medical Group

Kevin Ryan Yuhan, MD is a member of the following medical societies: Alpha Omega Alpha, American Medical Association, Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology, Phi Beta Kappa, American Academy of Ophthalmology, American Society of Cataract and Refractive Surgery

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

Timothy T You, MD Consulting Surgeon in Ophthalmology, Private Practice

Timothy T You, MD is a member of the following medical societies: American Academy of Ophthalmology, American Society of Retina Specialists

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

Specialty Editor Board

Simon K Law, MD, PharmD Clinical Professor of Health Sciences, Department of Ophthalmology, Jules Stein Eye Institute, University of California, Los Angeles, David Geffen School of Medicine

Simon K Law, MD, PharmD is a member of the following medical societies: American Academy of Ophthalmology, Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology, American Glaucoma Society

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

Christopher J Rapuano, MD Professor, Department of Ophthalmology, Jefferson Medical College of Thomas Jefferson University; Director of the Cornea Service, Co-Director of Refractive Surgery Department, Wills Eye Hospital

Christopher J Rapuano, MD is a member of the following medical societies: American Academy of Ophthalmology, American Ophthalmological Society, American Society of Cataract and Refractive Surgery, Contact Lens Association of Ophthalmologists, International Society of Refractive Surgery, Cornea Society, Eye Bank Association of America

Disclosure: Serve(d) as a director, officer, partner, employee, advisor, consultant or trustee for: Cornea Society, Allergan, Bausch & Lomb, Bio-Tissue, Shire, TearScience, TearLab<br/>Serve(d) as a speaker or a member of a speakers bureau for: Allergan, Bausch & Lomb, Bio-Tissue, TearScience.

Chief Editor

Hampton Roy, Sr, MD Associate Clinical Professor, Department of Ophthalmology, University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences

Hampton Roy, Sr, MD is a member of the following medical societies: American Academy of Ophthalmology, American College of Surgeons, Pan-American Association of Ophthalmology

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

Acknowledgements

Anastasios J Kanellopoulos, MD Assistant Program Director, Clinical Associate Professor, Department of Ophthalmology, Manhattan Eye, Ear, and Throat Hospital, New York University

Anastasios J Kanellopoulos, MD is a member of the following medical societies: American Academy of Ophthalmology, Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology, Eye Bank Association of America, and International Society of Refractive Surgery

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

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Section of eyelid with Kaposi sarcoma lesion under high magnification. This tissue section demonstrates increased angiogenesis and spindle-shaped cells. Courtesy of Ben Glasgow, MD, University of California, Los Angeles, Department of Ophthalmology, Jules Stein Eye Institute.
Section of eyelid with Kaposi sarcoma lesion under high magnification. This tissue section demonstrates endothelium-lined vascular channels and proliferation of spindle-shaped cells. Increased angiogenesis with erythrocyte extravasation is observed. Courtesy of Ben Glasgow, MD, University of California, Los Angeles, Department of Ophthalmology, Jules Stein Eye Institute.
The inferior conjunctiva is involved more commonly than the superior conjunctiva in Kaposi sarcoma. Courtesy of Gary N Holland, MD, University of California, Los Angeles, Department of Ophthalmology, Jules Stein Eye Institute.
Kaposi sarcoma involvement of the eyelid. Courtesy of Gary N Holland, MD, University of California, Los Angeles, Department of Ophthalmology, Jules Stein Eye Institute.
 
 
 
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