Splenogonadal fusion limb defect syndrome: report of five new cases and review

Am J Med Genet. 1999 Oct 8;86(4):347-58. doi: 10.1002/(sici)1096-8628(19991008)86:4<347::aid-ajmg9>3.0.co;2-a.


Splenogonadal fusion (SGF) is a rare congenital malformation in which the spleen is abnormally connected to the gonad. SGF may occur as an isolated condition or may be associated with other malformations, especially with terminal limb defects in what is called splenogonadal fusion limb defect (SGFLD) syndrome. In this article, we report on 5 new cases of SGFLD and we review the 25 cases reported since 1889. Most cases reviewed here have a combination of severe limb and oro-mandibular defects, suggesting that SGFLD may be related to the broader group of Hanhart complex. In addition, several cases have limb malformations and facial anomalies, which suggest that SGFLD overlaps with both femur-fibula-ulna dysostosis and femoral-facial syndrome. The hypothesis of a vascular disruptive event, occurring between the 5th and the 7th weeks of gestation, could explain the limb defects, the mandibular hypoplasia, and the fusion of the spleen to the gonad observed in SGFLD. However, this heterogenous and polytopic condition could also be the consequence of a primary field defect. All the cases to date reported have been sporadic and the recurrence risk is probably low. However, a recent case of Roberts syndrome with SGF was reported that suggests careful examination of chromosomal status.

Publication types

  • Case Reports
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Abnormalities, Multiple / embryology
  • Abnormalities, Multiple / etiology
  • Abnormalities, Multiple / genetics*
  • Adult
  • Craniofacial Abnormalities / genetics
  • Female
  • Gonads / abnormalities*
  • Humans
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Limb Deformities, Congenital / genetics*
  • Male
  • Mandible / abnormalities
  • Ovary / abnormalities
  • Pregnancy
  • Spleen / abnormalities*
  • Syndrome
  • Testis / abnormalities