Risk of Malignancy and Need for Surgery in Pediatric Patients with Morris or Y-chromosome Turner Syndrome: A Multicenter Survey

J Pediatr Adolesc Gynecol. 2015 Oct;28(5):333-6. doi: 10.1016/j.jpag.2014.09.015. Epub 2014 Oct 5.


Study objective: The management of intersex patients with Y-chromosome Turner or Morris syndrome remains a challenge. We report our experience with a multicenter European survey.

Design: We collected the data on 18 patients (mean age 10.2 years, range 2-17 years) with Morris (10 patients) or Turner (8 patients) syndrome harboring the Y chromosome who were treated in 1 of 6 European centers of pediatric surgery between 1997 and 2013. All patients were evaluated by use of a multidisciplinary diagnostic protocol. All patients received a bilateral gonadectomy via laparoscopy; only 1 center performed ovarian cryopreservation. Seven patients received a concomitant genitoplasty. Operative notes and histology were reviewed for details.

Results: No conversions to laparotomy and no complications were recorded. For the patients receiving only the gonadectomy, the length of hospital stay was 24-48 hours, whereas for the patients receiving an associated genitoplasty, it was 6-10 days. Specimens were negative for tumors in 83.3% of cases, whereas in 3 patients (16.6%), benign abnormalities (Sertoli cell hyperplasia in 1 patient and ovotestis in 2 patients) were recorded. A malignant tumor was not recorded in our series.

Conclusion: If the risk of malignancy is considered as the main indication for surgery in case of Turner or Morris syndrome, on the basis of our study, this indication should be reevaluated. However, based on the non-negligible rate of benign abnormalities reported in our series (16.6%), the performance of cryopreservation to preserve fertility and the possibility of performing genitoplasty during the same anesthetic procedure represent additional valid indications for surgery.

Keywords: Genitoplasty; Intersex disorders; Laparoscopic gonadectomy; Ovarian cryopreservation; Tumor.

Publication types

  • Multicenter Study

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Androgen-Insensitivity Syndrome / complications*
  • Androgen-Insensitivity Syndrome / surgery
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Chromosomes
  • Disorders of Sex Development / complications*
  • Disorders of Sex Development / genetics
  • Disorders of Sex Development / surgery
  • Europe
  • Female
  • Gonads / surgery*
  • Humans
  • Laparoscopy / methods
  • Length of Stay
  • Male
  • Neoplasms / complications*
  • Neoplasms / epidemiology
  • Postoperative Complications
  • Risk
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Transgender Persons
  • Turner Syndrome / complications*
  • Turner Syndrome / surgery