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The cut surface of desmoid-type fibromatosis is firm, white, and whorled. The white tumor infiltrates the adjacent skeletal muscle (red tissue – lower left) and fat (yellow tissue – upper left). This tendency for invasion of adjacent normal tissues and structures is the reason that desmoid-type fibromatosis has a relatively high rate of local recurrence, even after surgical removal.

The term fibromatosis refers to a group of soft tissue tumors[1] which have certain characteristics in common, including absence of cytologic and clinical malignant features, a histology consistent with proliferation of well-differentiated fibroblasts, an infiltrative growth pattern, and aggressive clinical behavior with frequent local recurrence. It is classed by the World Health Organization as an intermediate soft tissue tumor related to the sarcoma family. Arthur Purdy Stout coined the term fibromatosis (in the name congenital generalized fibromatosis, describing myofibromatosis), in 1954.[2]


Juvenile subtypes[edit]

Subtypes of juvenile fibromatosis include:[3]

Adult subtypes[edit]




Treatment is mainly surgical; radiotherapy or chemotherapy is usually an indication of relapse.[clarification needed] Head and neck desmoid fibromatosis is a serious condition due to local aggression, specific anatomical patterns and the high rate of relapse. For children surgery is particularly difficult, given the potential for growth disorders.[6]

Treatment includes prompt radical excision with a wide margin and/or radiation. For aggressive fibromatosis, the consensus on treatment is observation for new tumors rather than immediate surgery.[7] Despite their local infiltrative and aggressive behavior, mortality is minimal to nonexistent for peripheral tumors. In intra-abdominal fibromatosis associated with familial adenomatous polyposis (FAP), surgery is avoided if possible due to high rates of recurrence within the abdomen carrying significant morbidity and mortality. Conversely, for intra-abdominal fibromatosis without evidence of FAP extensive surgery may still be required for local symptoms, but the risk of recurrence is low.[8]


Other names include musculoaponeurotic fibromatosis, referring to the tendency of these tumors to be adjacent to and infiltrating deep skeletal muscle, aggressive fibromatosis and desmoid tumor. A clear difference should be made between intra-abdominal and extra-abdominal localizations. Fibromatosis is a different entity from neurofibromatosis.[citation needed]


  1. ^ "fibromatosis" at Dorland's Medical Dictionary
  2. ^ Beck, Jill C.; Devaney, Kenneth O.; Weatherly, Robert A.; Koopmann, Charles F.; Lesperance, Marci M. (1999-01-01). "Pediatric Myofibromatosis of the Head and Neck". Archives of Otolaryngology–Head & Neck Surgery. 125 (1): 39. doi:10.1001/archotol.125.1.39. ISSN 0886-4470.
  3. ^ "Fibromatosis". DermNet. Retrieved 2023-08-15.
  4. ^ Lavie JL, Rogers CL, Stalder MW, St Hilaire H (January 2021). "Primary Resection and Immediate Autologous Reconstruction of Fronto-orbital Infantile Myofibromatoses". Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery. Global Open. 9 (1): e3261. doi:10.1097/GOX.0000000000003261. PMC 7858576. PMID 33552804.
  5. ^ Durnford L, Patel MS, Khamar R, Khurram R (April 2021). "Bilateral sternocleidomastoid pseudotumors-a case report and literature review". Radiology Case Reports. 16 (4): 964–967. doi:10.1016/j.radcr.2021.02.001. PMC 7897923. PMID 33664922.
  6. ^ Cecilia Petrovan, Diana Nekula (Nov 2011). "Submandibular juvenile desmoid fibromatosis: case report of a 2 years old child". Rev. chir. oro-maxilo-fac. implantol. (in Romanian). 2 (3): 15–19. ISSN 2069-3850. 41. Retrieved 2012-06-06.(webpage has a translation button)
  7. ^ Kasper, B.; Baumgarten, C.; Garcia, J.; Bonvalot, S.; Haas, R.; Haller, F.; Hohenberger, P.; Penel, N.; Messiou, C.; van der Graaf, W.T.; Gronchi, A.; Bauer, S.; Blay, J.Y.; van Coevorden, F.; Dileo, P. (October 2017). "An update on the management of sporadic desmoid-type fibromatosis: a European Consensus Initiative between Sarcoma PAtients EuroNet (SPAEN) and European Organization for Research and Treatment of Cancer (EORTC)/Soft Tissue and Bone Sarcoma Group (STBSG)". Annals of Oncology. 28 (10): 2399–2408. doi:10.1093/annonc/mdx323. PMC 5834048. PMID 28961825.
  8. ^ Wilkinson MJ, Fitzgerald JE, Thomas JM, Hayes AJ, Strauss DC (2012). "Surgical resection for non familial adenomatous polyposis related intra-abdominal fibromatosis". British Journal of Surgery. Semantic Scholar. 99 (5): 706–713. doi:10.1002/bjs.8703. PMID 22359346. S2CID 205512855.

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