Sacrococcygeal teratomas: Clinico-pathological characteristics and isochromosome 12p status

Grzegorz T. Gurda, Christopher J. Vandenbussche, Raluca Yonescu, Nilda Gonzalez-Roibon, Carla LaShannon Ellis, Denise A S Batista, George J. Netto*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


The biological behavior of teratomas is highly variable, and morphologic features alone are insufficient to predict their clinical course. Prognostic factors that influence behavior include the following: patient sex, age, anatomic site, coincident neoplasm, and cytogenetic abnormalities. Gonadal teratomas have been well-characterized; postpubertal testicular teratomas are commonly associated with isochromosome 12p (i12p) and considered to nearly always carry a potential for malignant behavior, whereas ovarian and prepubertal testicular teratomas are i12p negative and predominantly benign in behavior. For extragonadal sites, such as sacrum and coccyx, clinical characteristics and i12p status are yet to be adequately characterized. As part of this study, we identified 19 sacrococcygeal teratomas in our surgical pathology archives from 1990 to 2012. Clinical records and slides were reviewed to confirm the original diagnosis. Gains in chromosome 12p, including i12p status were assessed in representative paraffin sections by fluorescence in situ hybridization. Our cases included 16 mature sacrococcygeal teratomas (11 prepubertal and 5 postpubertal) and three immature saccrococygeal teratomas (all prepubertal). Among mature teratomas, the average tumor size was larger in adults compared with prepubertal patients. A higher number of adult cases were recurrences (80% vs 21%), but only pediatric recurrences were managed with postoperative chemotherapy. All examined tumors were negative for i12p. 100% survival was documented in our cohort with a median follow-up of 6 years. We present a large series of sacrococcygeal teratomas and the first series to examine postpubertal adults at this anatomic site. All tumors lacked chromosome 12p gains, including i12p. Both pre-and postpubertal sacrococcygeal teratomas had a favorable outcome regardless of age or sex.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)562-568
Number of pages7
JournalModern Pathology
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 2014


  • extragonadal germ cell tumor
  • extragonadal teratoma
  • presacral space
  • sacrococcygeal teratoma

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine


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