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Porcelain gallbladder

Reviewer: Hanni Gulwani, M.D. (see Reviewers page)
Revised: 13 October 2014, last major update September 2012
Copyright: (c) 2003-2014, PathologyOutlines.com, Inc.


● Dense, paucicellular hyaline fibrosis transforming gallbladder wall into relatively thin and uniform band
● Diffusely effaces most of normal structure, some cases show calcifications
● Also called hyalinizing cholecystitis
● 0.5% of cholecystectomies - 20% of cases associated with gallbladder carcinoma

Gross description

● Pearly white appearance due to dystrophic calcification

Gross images

Various images

Micro description

● Widely scattered and bland-appearing glands embedded in thin band of hyaline stroma, commonly showing a disappearing lining, leaving behind granular, necrotic intraluminal debris (regression) with or without calcification (Am J Surg Pathol 2011;35:1104)
● Surface epithelium, if preserved, typically shows carcinoma in situ of either denuding or micropapillary types
● Glandular elements in wall should raise suspicion of carcinoma, since benign glands are usually sparse

Differential diagnosis

Carcinoma of gallbladder: glands have longitudinal axis parallel to the surface, irregular contours, clear cytoplasm with distinct borders, nuclear irregularities, washed-out chromatin

End of Gallbladder > Cholecystitis > Porcelain gallbladder

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