Pathology of the Pleura and Mediastinum

2018 Edition
| Editors: Timothy Craig Allen, Saul Suster

Teratoma, Mediastinal

  • Sandra Zekic TomasEmail author
  • Ivan Damjanov
Reference work entry


Mature cystic teratoma of the mediastinum; Primary benign mediastinal teratoma; Pure mediastinal teratoma


Mediastinal teratomas are usually cystic benign tumors resembling their more common ovarian namesakes. Like the ovarian teratomas, they are composed of somatic tissues corresponding to the differentiated derivatives of all three embryonic germ layers, i.e., ectoderm, mesoderm, and endoderm.

Clinical Features

  • Incidence

    Mature teratomas are the most common mediastinal GCT (Wick et al. 2004). However, since mediastinal GCTs are quite rare, it follows that these extragonadal teratomas are also uncommon (see also mediastinal germ cell tumors). Mature teratomas in a pure form account for approximately one third of all mediastinal GCT in adult males, over one half of all GCT in prepubertal males, and for more than 90% of mediastinal GCT in females (Williamson and Ulbright 2014). Teratomas may form components of malignant mixed germ cell tumors, and in prepubertal...

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References and Further Reading

  1. McKenney, J. K., Heerema-McKenney, A., & Rouse, R. V. (2007). Extragonadal germ cell tumors: A review with emphasis on pathologic features, clinical prognostic variables, and differential diagnostic considerations. Advances in Anatomic Pathology, 14, 69–92.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  2. Moran, C. A., & Suster, S. (1997). Primary germ cell tumors of the mediastinum. I. Analysis of 322 cases with special emphasis on teratomatous lesions and a proposal for histopathologic classification and clinical staging. Cancer, 80, 681–690.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  3. Weidner, N. (1999). Germ-cell tumors of the mediastinum. Seminar Diagnostic Pathology, 16, 42–50.Google Scholar
  4. Wick, M. R., Perlman, E. J., Gobel, U., et al. (2004). Teratoma. In W. D. Travis, E. Brambilla, H. K. Muller-Hermelink, & C. C. Harris (Eds.), Tumours of the lung, pleura, thymus and heart. Lyon: IARC Press.Google Scholar
  5. Williamson, S. R., & Ulbright, T. M. (2014). Germ cell tumors of the mediastinum. In A. M. Marchevsky & M. R. Wick (Eds.), Pathology of the mediastinum (pp. 146–168). New York: Cambridge University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Pathology, University Hospital SplitSchool of Medicine, University of SplitSplitCroatia
  2. 2.Department of PathologyUniversity of Kansas School of MedicineKansas CityUSA