Ovarian Sertoli-Leydig cell tumors: an analysis of 13 cases

Arch Gynecol Obstet. 2020 Jul;302(1):203-208. doi: 10.1007/s00404-020-05588-1. Epub 2020 May 19.


Purpose: To report the clinical, ultrasound and histopathological characteristics, clinical management, and prognosis of 13 patients with Sertoli-Leydig cell tumors (SLCTs) of ovary.

Methods: 13 patients with pathologically confirmed ovarian SLCTs at International Peace Maternity and Child Health Hospital from 2010 and 2019 were included in this study. The clinical, ultrasound and histopathological characteristics, clinical management, and prognosis of 13 patients were retrospectively analyzed.

Results: The age ranged 25-68 years. Of the 8 (62%) patients presenting endocrine symptoms, 4 had post-menopausal hemorrhage, 4 had menstrual irregularity, 2 had androgenic manifestations, 1 had hirsutism, and 1 showed acne with thyroid nodules. 1 patient had elevated cancer antigen 125 (CA125), and 2 had elevated testosterone (T). The other 5 patients showed no symptoms of whom masses were detected incidentally by physical examination. All tumors were at stage I and confined to unilateral ovary. 11 tumors were solid or mixed solid-cystic masses with clear boundaries on ultrasound, and 1 tumor was a cystic mass. 7 tumors were intermediately differentiated and 6 were poorly differentiated, among which 1 case had heterologous elements (poorly differentiated) and 8 had a retiform pattern. Grade 2 endometrial cancer occurred in 2 cases (1 intermediately differentiated and 1 poorly differentiated). One case had multinodular goiter (intermediately differentiated). The patients were classified into endocrine function group (8/13) and no endocrine function (5/13). The proportion of retiform pattern of the group with endocrine function was significantly higher than that of no endocrine function group (p < 0.05). However, the mean age, diameter of tumors, and the proportions of poor differentiation and rupture showed no significant difference. All patients were treated with surgical excision. Three cases underwent surgery twice after the pathological results came out. For the final surgery, 1 patient underwent cystectomy, 3 underwent unilateral salpingo-oophorectomy, and 9 underwent total hysterectomy and bilateral salpingo-oophorectomy. 7 had received postoperative chemotherapy. All of 13 patients exhibited disease-free survival (DFS) with the longest follow-up time being 9 years.

Conclusion: The clinical characteristics and imaging findings may provide information for the diagnosis of SLCTs. Higher percentage of retiform pattern was found in endocrine function group. Concurrence of Grade 2 endometrial carcinoma with SCLTs was reported. The prognosis of SLCTs is good. Conservative surgery is acceptable for young patients wishing to preserve fertility.

Keywords: Ovarian Sertoli-Leydig cell tumors; Slcts.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Middle Aged
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Sertoli-Leydig Cell Tumor / diagnosis*