Pathology of the Pleura and Mediastinum

2018 Edition
| Editors: Timothy Craig Allen, Saul Suster

Primary Mediastinal Choriocarcinoma

  • Annikka WeissferdtEmail author
  • Cesar A. Moran
Reference work entry


Chorionepithelioma; Chorionic carcinoma; Chorionic epithelioma


Choriocarcinoma is a highly malignant tumor of trophoblastic origin that forms part of the spectrum of gestational trophoblastic disease but is also well documented to occur outside of the uterus including sites such as the testis, ovary, central nervous system, and mediastinum. The mediastinum is the most common anatomic site for extragonadal germ cell tumors in adults, and the tumors occur almost exclusively in males. Histological classification at this site closely resembles that used in the gonads and includes teratomas, seminomas, yolk sac tumors, embryonal carcinoma, choriocarcinoma, and mixed germ cell tumors. The existence of primary mediastinal choriocarcinoma has been a matter of debate since it is well known that primary testicular germ cell tumors often metastasize widely before their origin in the gonads is identified. Nevertheless, the absence of any tumor in the gonads by palpation and/or...

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References and Further Reading

  1. Dehner, L. P. (1990). Germ cell tumors of the mediastinum. Seminars in Diagnostic Pathology, 7, 266–284.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  2. 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
  3. Moran, C. A., & Suster, S. (1997). Primary mediastinal choriocarcinomas: A clinicopathologic and immunohistochemical study of eight cases. American Journal of Surgical Pathology, 21, 1007–1012.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  4. Moran, C. A., Suster, S., & Koss, M. N. (1997). Primary germ cell tumors of the mediastinum: III. Yolk sac tumor, embryonal carcinoma, choriocarcinoma, and combined nonteratomatous germ cell tumors of the mediastinum – A clinicopathologic and immunohistochemical study of 64 cases. Cancer, 80, 699–707. 15.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  5. Weidner, N. (1999). Germ cell tumors of the mediastinum. Seminars in Diagnostic Pathology, 16, 42–50.PubMedGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.MD Anderson Cancer CenterHoustonUSA