Dysgenesis of testicular and streak gonads in the syndrome of mixed gonadal dysgenesis: perspective derived from a clinicopathologic analysis of twenty-one cases.
The clinical and pathologic aspects of 21 cases of mixed gonadal dysgenesis (MGD) were studied. The gonads in 15 patients consisted of a macroscopic testis and a streak gonad; six patients had variants, including two with bilateral testes and four with bilateral streak gonads or tumors. Functionally, the gonads were incompetent. Testes 1) failed to completely inhibit müllerian development, 2) failed to support full differentiation of mesonephric duct structures, 3) failed to adequately masculinize development of the external genitalia, or 4) often failed to mediate their own descent, resulting in asymmetry of the internal and external genitalia. None of the streak gonads mediated normal female adolescent development or fertility. Microscopic examination revealed that every gonad, regardless of its gross appearance, was morphologically abnormal. Although gonads with seminiferous tubules usually developed to a moderately advanced state, macroscopically resembling testes, the hilar zone remained architecturally disorganized; the cortex invariably lacked more than a rudimentary tunica albuginea or exhibited partial ovarian differentiation, sometimes even with a rare primordial follicle. Over time, the seminiferous tubules atrophied and hyalinized. Gonads that grossly resembled streak gonads were observed microscopically to be composed of a stroma resembling that of normal ovarian cortex. In patients more than several years of age, the entire complement of germ cells in streak gonads disappeared. It is suggested that patients with MGD be raised as females. Early removal of gonads will prevent the development of gonadoblastoma and dysgerminoma. If the uterus is retained and the patient is subsequently given exogenous estrogen, care should be taken to detect early any signs of the development of endometrial carcinoma or its precursor, to which these patients may be prone.
Robboy, SJ; Miller, T; Donahoe, PK; Jahre, C; Welch, WR; Haseltine, FP; Miller, WA; Atkins, L; Crawford, JD
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