Aggressive spinal germinoma with ascending metastases

Tekkok I., Sav A.

JOURNAL OF NEURO-ONCOLOGY, cilt.75, sa.2, ss.135-141, 2005 (SCI İndekslerine Giren Dergi) identifier

  • Yayın Türü: Makale / Tam Makale
  • Cilt numarası: 75 Konu: 2
  • Basım Tarihi: 2005
  • Doi Numarası: 10.1007/s11060-005-0377-y
  • Sayfa Sayıları: ss.135-141


We report the case of a 28-year-old young man who presented with progressive paraparesis and urinary incontinence. Initial spinal MR scans showed a sausage-like lesion that extended between L1 and S2. At surgery, an encapsulated intradural extramedullary tumor was removed en bloc. The initial histopathological diagnosis was ependymoma. The tumor recurred locally to double its original size only 4months later. After second surgery, 5100 cGy of local spinal radiation was given since the pathologist believed that the new tumor exhibited anaplastic features. Subsequently tumor recurred at T6-10 levels and later in the right parasellar region. Surgery was undertaken for both recurrences and radiation to whole spine and to whole brain respectively followed surgery. At 11months after the initial presentation, a new tumor was diagnosed at T11-T12 levels. After fifth surgery, chemotherapy with cisplatin, doxorubicin and vincristine was started. At this stage, review of all five surgical specimens by an outside neuropathologist was considered crucial. The new and correct histological diagnosis was germinoma. A new chemotherapy regimen targeted for germinoma was then started. The patient remains alive with no evidence of disease at 22months after initial presentation. Primary spinal germinomas are exceedingly rare. A review of the literature revealed only 14 biopsy-proven spinal germinoma cases. Our case is clearly unique in aggressivity of the tumor, a feature often unexpected for germinomas. This case proves that the dissemination risk may be very serious for germinomas and that the craniospinal radiation may be a more secure treatment mode.