The diagnosis of benign and malignant uterine smooth muscle tumors depends on morphologic criteria such as nuclear atypia, coagulative tumor cell necrosis and mitotic activity. Most of these tumors are readily classifiable into benign or malignant categories using these criteria. However, the distinction between leiomyomas and leiomyosarcomas may at times be problematic. Hence, it would be useful to have additional markers which could help to distinguish these tumors. The aim of the study was to evaluate p16 and p21 expressions in uterine smooth muscle tumors and determine whether p16 and p21 have a potential value in the differential diagnosis of problematic cases. In addition, we evaluated whether the differential expression of p16 and p21 in uterine leiomyosarcomas correlated with tumor recurrence and patient survival.