OBJECTIVE: To analyze a series of occurrences of growing teratoma syndrome after ovarian germ cell tumors.
METHODS: We analyzed a database containing 103 patients affected by pure or mixed ovarian immature teratoma.
RESULTS: We report 12 patients fulfilling growing teratoma syndrome criteria (incidence 12%). The median interval between the diagnosis of ovarian immature teratoma and growing teratoma syndrome was 9 months (range 4–55). Growing teratoma syndrome was revealed by radiological examinations in nine cases (75%). In all cases but one, growing teratoma syndrome occurred in the site involved by the primary tumor. The peritoneum was the first site involved (10 cases, 83%). A complete surgical resection of the growing teratoma syndrome was done in eight cases. The median follow-up was 144 months. Four patients presented a late growing teratoma syndrome recurrence after treatment (second event), more than 5 years after the initial diagnosis, and 14 years later for one patient. All patients but one (lost to follow-up) were still alive at the end of the study.
CONCLUSION: The treatment of growing teratoma syndrome consists of the surgical resection of the tumor, as completely as possible. Because of the possibility of very late recurrence of growing teratoma syndrome, a prolonged follow-up of patients treated for ovarian immature teratoma is mandatory.
LEVEL OF EVIDENCE: II-3