Document Detail

Mediastinal germ cell tumors.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  1312877     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
Mediastinal germ cell tumors are among the most common tumors in the anterior mediastinum. This tumor should be considered strongly in the differential diagnosis of anterior mediastinal masses. Benign teratomas are common in this site, and complete surgical resection results in cure of nearly all patients. Malignant mediastinal seminomas are highly curable and either radiotherapy (mediastinal disease) or cisplatin-based chemotherapy (metastatic disease) will result in long-term survival in 80% or more of patients. Mediastinal nonseminomatous germ cell malignancies represent a clinically and biologically distinct subset of mediastinal germ cell neoplasms. Relative to their testicular counterparts, these tumors carry a poor prognosis, but, with newer refinements in cisplatin-based chemotherapy, approximately half of these patients will survive their illness. The history of success with chemotherapy should prompt thorough pathologic and serologic evaluation of all patients with mediastinal malignancies in hopes of defining a curable process. In particular, poorly differentiated carcinomas at this site should be treated as germ cell tumors, and so long-term survival will be attainable. Mediastinal nonseminomatous germ cell tumors are associated with the development of nongerm cell malignancies such as embryonal rhabdomyosarcomas and hematologic malignancies such as acute megakaryocytic leukemia and malignant histiocytosis. The development of these associated malignancies is not related to therapy and represents a true biological link between these malignancies. It is likely that the development of these malignancies is an expression of the multipotential nature of primitive germ cells. Careful clinical and biologic investigations of these rare transformations may lead to greater understanding of the regulation of events in the malignant process.
C R Nichols
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Review    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Seminars in thoracic and cardiovascular surgery     Volume:  4     ISSN:  1043-0679     ISO Abbreviation:  Semin. Thorac. Cardiovasc. Surg.     Publication Date:  1992 Jan 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  1992-04-29     Completed Date:  1992-04-29     Revised Date:  2005-11-16    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  8917640     Medline TA:  Semin Thorac Cardiovasc Surg     Country:  UNITED STATES    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  45-50     Citation Subset:  IM    
Division of Hematology/Oncology, Indiana University School of Medicine, Indianapolis.
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MeSH Terms
Klinefelter Syndrome / etiology
Mediastinal Neoplasms* / diagnosis,  etiology,  pathology,  therapy
Neoplasms, Germ Cell and Embryonal* / diagnosis,  etiology,  pathology,  therapy

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