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Henry Ford Hospital Medical Journal

Abstract

Endodermal sinus tumor of the ovary occurs primarily in children and young adults. This tumor is classified as a germ cell tumor which comprises approximately 5% of all ovarian tumors. In the past, patients with this highly malignant tumor had low survival. However, with the evolution of effective adjunctive chemotherapeutic regimens, specifically vincristine, actinomycin D, and cyclophosphamide, survival rates have improved. In an attempt to continuously improve survival rates, other combination chemotherapeutic regimens are currently under investigation. Unlike epithelial ovarian malignancies, endodermal sinus tumor can be monitored by a specific tumor marker, alpha-fetoprotein (AFP). Serum levels of AFP can be followed from the preoperative period through the course of chemotherapy. When elevated, AFP has excellent predictability that persistent disease is present. Because this disease presents primarily in young females, preservation of reproductive function is of utmost importance. We report a case of advanced endodermal sinus tumor which was managed with conservative surgery only, followed by radical combination chemotherapy, resulting in preservation of normal reproductive function and total resolution of disease documented by second-look laparotomy.

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