Microsatellitosis in Merkel cell carcinoma - a staging quandary

Merkel Cell Carcinoma

Farees Saqlain, Sophia Z. Shalhout, Kayla-Wright, David M. Miller


March 14, 2021

We provide an analysis in the Dermatology Online Journal of microsatellitosis in a cohort of MCC patients.


Merkel cell carcinoma (MCC) is a rare small cell cancer of the skin with a high rate of metastasis and mortality. While microsatellite disease—disease deposits in close proximity to, yet discontinuous from, the site of the primary tumor and revealed only on pathological assessment—has been characterized as an adverse prognosticator in melanoma, its significance has not yet been established in MCC. Here, we provide in the Dermatology Online Journal, an investigation of the frequency of microsatellite disease in a 5-year cohort of patients at the Mass General Brigham with primary cutaneous MCC. We reviewed the pathology reports available from the MGB electronic medical record and examined the real-world staging decisions made in these situations.