Imaging in gynecological disease (23): clinical and ultrasound characteristics of ovarian carcinosarcoma

F. Ciccarone, A. Biscione, F. Moro, D. Fischerova, L. Savelli, M. Munaretto, L. Jokubkiene, P. Sladkevicius, V. Chiappa, R. Fruscio, D. Franchi, E. Epstein, D. Timmerman, W. Froyman, L. Valentin, G. Scambia, A. C. Testa

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objective: To describe the clinical and ultrasound characteristics of ovarian carcinosarcoma. Methods: This was a retrospective multicenter study. Patients with a histological diagnosis of ovarian carcinosarcoma, who had undergone preoperative ultrasound examination between 2010 and 2019, were identified from the International Ovarian Tumor Analysis (IOTA) database. Additional patients who were examined outside of the IOTA study were identified from the databases of the participating centers. The masses were described using the terms and definitions of the IOTA group. Additionally, two experienced ultrasound examiners reviewed all available images to identify typical ultrasound features using pattern recognition. Results: Ninety-one patients with ovarian carcinosarcoma who had undergone ultrasound examination were identified, of whom 24 were examined within the IOTA studies and 67 were examined outside of the IOTA studies. Median age at diagnosis was 66 (range, 33–91) years and 84/91 (92.3%) patients were postmenopausal. Most patients (67/91, 73.6%) were symptomatic, with the most common complaint being pain (51/91, 56.0%). Most tumors (67/91, 73.6%) were International Federation of Gynecology and Obstetrics (FIGO) Stage III or IV. Bilateral lesions were observed on ultrasound in 46/91 (50.5%) patients. Ascites was present in 38/91 (41.8%) patients. The median largest tumor diameter was 100 (range, 18–260) mm. All ovarian carcinosarcomas contained solid components, and most were described as solid (66/91, 72.5%) or multilocular-solid (22/91, 24.2%). The median diameter of the largest solid component was 77.5 (range, 11–238) mm. Moderate or rich vascularization was found in 78/91 (85.7%) cases. Retrospective analysis of ultrasound images and videoclips using pattern recognition in 73 cases revealed that all tumors had irregular margins and inhomogeneous echogenicity of the solid components. Forty-seven of 73 (64.4%) masses appeared as a solid tumor with cystic areas. Cooked appearance of the solid tissue was identified in 28/73 (38.4%) tumors. No pathognomonic ultrasound sign of ovarian carcinosarcoma was found. Conclusions: Ovarian carcinosarcomas are usually diagnosed in postmenopausal women and at an advanced stage. The most common ultrasound appearance is a large solid tumor with irregular margins, inhomogeneous echogenicity of the solid tissue and cystic areas. The second most common pattern is a large multilocular-solid mass with inhomogeneous echogenicity of the solid tissue.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)241-247
Number of pages7
JournalUltrasound in Obstetrics and Gynecology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2022 Feb

Subject classification (UKÄ)

  • Radiology, Nuclear Medicine and Medical Imaging


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