Virilizing adrenocortical tumors in childhood: Eight cases and a review of the literature

P. D.K. Lee, R. J. Winter, O. C. Green

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

102 Scopus citations


Eight cases of adrenocortical tumor are presented with a review of the literature. Although such tumors are rare, they are important causes of inappropriate virilization and Cushing's syndrome in childhood. Clinical virilization with or without hypercortisolism was found in all eight children, who were 5 years old or younger. Excessive linear growth was noted, despite evidence of hypercortisolism. Serum levels of dehydroepiandrosterone, dehydroepiandrosterone sulfate, testosterone, and cortisol were elevated in all cases tested and appear to be useful diagnostic alternatives to the more traditional determinations of urine 17-ketosteroids and 17-hydroxycorticosteroids. Abdominal sonography and computed tomography have proven to be reliable tools for tumor localization. Surgical resection was the definitive therapy in all patients, and perioperative steroid replacement was essential. Histologic diagnosis appeared to have little bearing on prognosis, and the majority of pediatric patients have had clinically benign disease. At a mean follow-up of 3 years, seven of the eight children were alive and had no evidence of tumor recurrence.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)437-444
Number of pages8
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1985
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health


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