Research Article| Volume 26, ISSUE 1, P149-159, July 1949

Primary teratomas of the lateral retroperitoneal spaces

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      A review of fifty-seven primary teratomas of the lateral retroperitoneal spaces is presented. An additional case has been studied and the patient successfully treated by us. The origin of these tumors can only be theorized. In this series 10 per cent of the teratomas had undergone malignant changes. The remaining teratomas caused symptoms of pressure as their local growth encroached on surrounding organs. Commensurate with its congenital nature, the tumor manifests itself most frequently in persons of the younger age groups. A slightly higher incidence of occurrence has been found in females than in males. The left side was twice as frequently the site of origin as was the right side. The size of the growth is variable and of no benefit in differentiating teratomas from other tumors of the retroperitoneal spaces. Diagnosis can be expedited by roentgenologic evidence of bones or teeth within the tumor. When such positive objective evidence is lacking, the diagnostician is beset with the difficult problem of giving a preoperative diagnosis. By virtue of an understanding of the clinical characteristics of the individual tumor types this problem can be met. We have attempted to find clinical characteristics of diagnostic significance in these compiled cases of retroperitoneal teratomas.
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