High-grade malignant transformation of a radiation-naïve nasopharyngeal angiofibroma

Jordan J. Allensworth, Scott Troob, Christian Lanciault, Peter Andersen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Background: Nasopharyngeal angiofibromas are typically considered benign vascular neoplasms, with descriptions of high-grade sarcomatous change found only in lesions with prior radiotherapy. Methods and Results: We describe the first reported case of high-grade malignant change in a nasopharyngeal angiofibroma naive to radiation. A 45-year-old man presented with left-sided nasal congestion and fullness and was found to have a left-sided nasopharyngeal mass with intracranial extension on CT scan. A biopsy of the mass revealed nasopharyngeal angiofibroma. The patient opted for MRI surveillance, which revealed interval growth 3 years later. Decompression surgery revealed only angiofibroma, but resection 9 months later demonstrated high-grade sarcoma and concomitant angiofibroma. The patient had residual disease which progressed through chemoradiation, and is now pursuing clinical trial enrollment. Conclusion: Malignant transformation of nasopharyngeal angiofibroma is extremely rare. As highlighted by this report, high-grade undifferentiated lesions may arise in tumors without previous radiation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalHead and Neck
StateAccepted/In press - 2016


  • Adult angiofibroma
  • Malignant transformation
  • Nasopharyngeal angiofibroma
  • Radiation naive
  • Undifferentiated sarcoma

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Otorhinolaryngology


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