Giant Cell Tumor of Tendon Sheath

Document Type : RESEARCH PAPER


1 Orthopaedic Hand and Upper Extremity Service Harvard Medical School Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, MA 02114, USA

2 Orthopaedic Hand and Upper Extremity Service Harvard Medical School Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, MA 02114, USA

3 Massachusetts General Hospital


 Giant cell tumor of tendon sheath (GCTTS) is often thought of as a volar finger mass. We hypothesized that GCTTS are equally common on the dorsal and volar aspects of the hand. In addition, we hypothesized that there are no factors associated with the location (volar versus dorsal) and largest measured dimension of a GCTTS. 
 A total of 126 patients with a pathological diagnosis of a GCTTS of the hand or finger were reviewed. Basic emographic and GCTTS specific information was obtained. Bivariable analyses were used to assess predicting factors for location (volar or dorsal side) and largest measured diameter of a GCTTS. 
 Seventy-two tumors (57%) were on the volar side of the hand, 47 (37%) were dorsal, 6 (4.8%) were both dorsal and volar, and one was midaxial (0.79%). The most common site of a GCTTS was the index finger (30%). There were no factors significantly associated with the location (volar or dorsal, n=119) of the GCTTS. There were also no factors significantly associated with a larger diameter of a GCTTS. 
 A GCTTS was more frequently seen on the volar aspect of the hand. No significant factors associated with the location or an increased size of a GCTTS were found in this study.


  1. Darwish FM, Haddad WH. Giant cell tumour of tendon sheath: experience with 52 cases. Singapore Med J. 2008; 49:879-82.
  2. Fotiadis E, Papadopoulos A, Svarnas T, Akritopoulos P, Sachinis NP, Chalidis BE. Giant cell tumour of tendon sheath of the digits. A systematic review. Hand (N Y). 2011;6:244-9.
  3. Jones FE, Soule EH, Coventry MB. Fibrous xanthoma of synovium (giant-cell tumor of tendon sheath, pigmented nodular synovitis). A study of one hundred and eighteen cases. J Bone Joint Surg Am. 1969;51:76-86.
  4. Ushijima M, Hashimoto H, Tsuneyoshi M, Enjoji M. Giant cell tumor of the tendon sheath (nodular tenosynovitis). A study of 207 cases to compare the large joint group with the common digit group. Cancer. 1986;57:875-84.
  5. Monaghan H, Salter DM, Al-Nafussi A. Giant cell tumour of tendon sheath (localised nodular tenosynovitis): clinicopathological features of 71 cases. J Clin Pathol. 2001;54:404-7.
  6. Monaghan H, Bubb VJ, Sirimujalin R, Millward-Sadler SJ, Salter DM. Adenomatous polyposis coli (APC), beta-catenin, and cadherin are expressed in human bone and cartilage. Histopathology. 2001;39:611-9.
  7. Kotwal PP, Gupta V, Malhotra R. Giant-cell tumour of the tendon sheath. Is radiotherapy indicated to prevent recurrence after surgery? J Bone Joint Surg Br. 2000;82:571-3.
  8. Moore JR, Weiland AJ, Curtis RM. Localized nodular tenosynovitis: experience with 115 cases. J Hand Surg Am. 1984;9:412-7.
  9. Ozalp T, Yercan H, Kurt C, Ozdemir O, Coskunol E. Giant-cell tumors of the tendon sheath involving the hand or the wrist: an analysis of 141 patients. Acta Orthop Traumatol Turc. 2004;38:120-4.
  10. Reilly KE, Stern PJ, Dale JA. Recurrent giant cell tumors of the tendon sheath. J Hand Surg Am. 1999;24:1298-302.
  11. Williams J, Hodari A, Janevski P, Siddiqui A. Recurrence of giant cell tumors in the hand: a prospective study. J Hand Surg Am. 2010;35:451-6.
  12. Garg B, Kotwal PP. Giant cell tumour of the tendon sheath of the hand. J Orthop Surg (Hong Kong). 2011;19:218-20.
  13. Ho CY, Maleki Z. Giant cell tumor of tendon sheath: cytomorphologic and radiologic findings in 41 patients. Diagn Cytopathol. 2012;40:94-8.
  14. Jalgaonkar A, Dhinsa B, Cottam H, Mani G. Giant cell tumours of tendon sheath of hand: causes and strategies to prevent recurrence. Hand Surg. 2011;16:149-54.