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Arrhenoblastoma of ovary

Definition

Arrhenoblastoma of the ovary is an ovarian tumor that releases the male hormone testosterone or other hormones. Sertoli-Leydig cell tumor is a related condition.

Alternative Names

Stromal tumor; Gonadal stromal tumor; Sex cord tumor; Androblastoma

Causes

This is a rare tumor. It accounts for less than 0.5% of all ovarian tumors.

These tumors are found in women of all age groups, but are most common in young women.

Symptoms

This tumor releases male hormones, which cause the following symptoms in women:

  • Deepening of the voice
  • Increased acne
  • Increased hair on the face and body
  • Increased size of the clitoris
  • Male pattern baldness

Exams and Tests

The following tests are used to diagnose the condition:

  • Blood tests to check levels of hormones that may be released by the tumor
  • CT scan of the pelvis and abdomen to see if the tumor has spread
  • Ultrasound of the ovaries

Treatment

Surgery to remove the tumor is the main treatment. If the cancer has spread, chemotherapy or radiation therapy may be considered.

Support Groups

You can ease the stress of illness by joining a support group where members share common experiences and problems.

Outlook (Prognosis)

The outcome of this disease depends on whether it has spread, and whether surgery can completely remove the tumor.

Arrhenoblastoma has a low chance of spreading. If the tumor is found early, the cure rate can be very good.

Possible Complications

Complications may include:

  • Complications of surgery
  • Masculine symptoms (virilization)
  • Spread of the tumor if it is not completely removed

When to Contact a Medical Professional

Call your health care provider if you are a woman and have masculine symptoms. Also call if you feel a lump in your lower belly area.

Prevention

There is no good screening test. Regular gynecologic exams and recognizing masculine symptoms may help detect the disease.

References

Bulun SE. The physiology and pathology of the female reproductive axis. In: Melmed S, Polonsky KS, Larsen PR, Kronenberg HM, eds. Williams Textbook of Endocrinology. 13th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier Saunders; 2016:chap 17.

Lobo RA. Hyperandrogenism. In: Lentz GM, Lobo RA, Gershenson DM, Katz VL, eds. Comprehensive Gynecology. 6th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier Mosby; 2012:chap 40.


Review Date: 2/12/2016
Reviewed By: Todd Gersten, MD, Hematology/Oncology, Florida Cancer Specialists & Research Institute, Wellington, FL. Review provided by VeriMed Healthcare Network. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Isla Ogilvie, PhD, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.
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