Hernia sacs are generally regarded as routine specimens in the daily practice of surgical pathology. However, unexpected findings including carcinoma can occasionally arise in these seemingly benign specimens. To ascertain the prevalence of metastatic carcinoma found within hernia sacs and to determine the importance of routine histologic examination of hernia sacs, we conducted a retrospective study of all hernia sacs with a diagnosis of metastatic carcinoma reported in our hospital system between January 2006 and December 2012. Of 3117 total herniorrhaphy specimens between 2006 and 2012, 11 (0.35%) were found to have metastatic carcinoma. Interestingly, in 3 cases, the initial diagnosis of cancer was made during histologic examination of the hernia sac. Metastatic carcinoma in hernia sacs is a rare occurrence; however, it is encountered in routine practice. It is recommended that herniorrhaphy specimens not be discarded and, instead, be regarded as peritoneal biopsies for routine histologic examination.
- Hernia sac
- Metastatic carcinoma
- Routine histologic examination
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pathology and Forensic Medicine