Teratoma Symptoms & Causes

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What causes teratomas?

The cause of most teratomas is not completely understood. Teratomas are often associated with a number of inherited defects that affect the central nervous system, genitourinary tract and lower spine.

What are the symptoms of a teratoma?

Each child may experience symptoms differently and symptoms vary widely depending on the size and location of the tumor.

Your child's symptoms may include:

  • a tumor, swelling, or mass that can be felt or seen
  • elevated levels of alpha-fetoprotein (AFP)
  • elevated levels of beta-human chorionic gonadotropin (B-HCG)
  • constipation, incontinence and leg weakness - if the tumor is in the sacrum (a segment of the vertebral column that forms the top part of the pelvis)
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- Sandra L. Fenwick, President and CEO

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