Virilizing luteinized thecoma of the ovary in a 15-year-old female: a case report

J Pediatr Adolesc Gynecol. 2009 Oct;22(5):e107-10. doi: 10.1016/j.jpag.2008.06.002. Epub 2009 Jul 3.


Background: Only 30% of luteinized thecomas are found in women under the age of 30, and they are typically benign. Only 11% of luteinized thecomas show clinical signs of androgen production. We present an unusual case of a 15-year-old female who presented with secondary amenorrhea and virilization and was subsequently diagnosed with a benign luteinized thecoma of the ovary. This is the youngest nonmalignant luteinized thecoma reported to date.

Case: A 15-year-old Sri Lankan female presented with increasing hair growth, a hoarse voice, and secondary amenorrhea. On physical examination, there was marked hirsutism and clitoromegaly. Investigations found an elevated free testosterone level and an enlarged, homogenous left ovary with absent normal ovarian architecture. A laparotomy and unilateral salpingo-oophorectomy was performed. The final diagnosis was a luteinized ovarian thecoma, with no evidence of malignancy. Postoperatively, testosterone levels normalized and menstrual cycles resumed. Although laser treatment helped with her hirsutism, her other virilizing symptoms (deepening of voice, clitoromegaly) did not improve postoperatively.

Conclusion: This case of a virilizing ovarian luteinized thecoma emphasizes the need for timely evaluation, diagnosis, and treatment of patients presenting with symptoms of excess androgen secretion in order to avoid irreversible unwanted effects. Possible ovarian causes of excess androgen secretion should not be overlooked when considering possible causes of hyperandrogenism and secondary amenorrhea.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Amenorrhea / etiology
  • Fallopian Tubes / surgery
  • Female
  • Hirsutism / therapy
  • Hoarseness / etiology
  • Humans
  • Laser Therapy
  • Ovarian Neoplasms / diagnosis*
  • Ovarian Neoplasms / diagnostic imaging
  • Ovarian Neoplasms / physiopathology
  • Ovarian Neoplasms / surgery
  • Ovariectomy
  • Thecoma / diagnosis*
  • Thecoma / diagnostic imaging
  • Thecoma / physiopathology
  • Thecoma / surgery
  • Tomography, X-Ray Computed
  • Virilism / diagnosis
  • Virilism / etiology*
  • Virilism / physiopathology