We are independent & ad-supported. We may earn a commission for purchases made through our links.

Advertiser Disclosure

Our website is an independent, advertising-supported platform. We provide our content free of charge to our readers, and to keep it that way, we rely on revenue generated through advertisements and affiliate partnerships. This means that when you click on certain links on our site and make a purchase, we may earn a commission. Learn more.

How We Make Money

We sustain our operations through affiliate commissions and advertising. If you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase, we may receive a commission from the merchant at no additional cost to you. We also display advertisements on our website, which help generate revenue to support our work and keep our content free for readers. Our editorial team operates independently from our advertising and affiliate partnerships to ensure that our content remains unbiased and focused on providing you with the best information and recommendations based on thorough research and honest evaluations. To remain transparent, we’ve provided a list of our current affiliate partners here.

What is an Immature Teratoma?

By H. Colledge
Updated Mar 03, 2024
Our promise to you
TheHealthBoard is dedicated to creating trustworthy, high-quality content that always prioritizes transparency, integrity, and inclusivity above all else. Our ensure that our content creation and review process includes rigorous fact-checking, evidence-based, and continual updates to ensure accuracy and reliability.

Our Promise to you

Founded in 2002, our company has been a trusted resource for readers seeking informative and engaging content. Our dedication to quality remains unwavering—and will never change. We follow a strict editorial policy, ensuring that our content is authored by highly qualified professionals and edited by subject matter experts. This guarantees that everything we publish is objective, accurate, and trustworthy.

Over the years, we've refined our approach to cover a wide range of topics, providing readers with reliable and practical advice to enhance their knowledge and skills. That's why millions of readers turn to us each year. Join us in celebrating the joy of learning, guided by standards you can trust.

Editorial Standards

At TheHealthBoard, we are committed to creating content that you can trust. Our editorial process is designed to ensure that every piece of content we publish is accurate, reliable, and informative.

Our team of experienced writers and editors follows a strict set of guidelines to ensure the highest quality content. We conduct thorough research, fact-check all information, and rely on credible sources to back up our claims. Our content is reviewed by subject matter experts to ensure accuracy and clarity.

We believe in transparency and maintain editorial independence from our advertisers. Our team does not receive direct compensation from advertisers, allowing us to create unbiased content that prioritizes your interests.

An immature teratoma is a rare type of cancer which mainly affects females under the age of 20. It is an example of what is called a germ cell tumor. Germ cell tumors develop from eggs or sperm, and an immature teratoma arises in egg cells inside the ovary. It is different from a mature teratoma, which is a benign, or non-cancerous, growth found in women of child-bearing age. Although an immature teratoma is a malignant tumor, treatment with chemotherapy and surgery can sometimes be successful even after the cancer has spread.

Oncology researchers do not fully understand the causes of an immature teratoma, but there may be a genetic factor as the tumor is found more frequently in certain families. Symptoms of an immature teratoma may include swelling of the abdomen, pain, vomiting, or, with more advanced tumors, a lump which can be felt. Pain may occur suddenly or be present for a longer period of time. Sometimes the tumor may cause the ovary to twist round, cutting off its blood supply, and this can cause severe sudden pain.

Diagnosis of the tumor can be made using a computerized tomography, or CT, scan, together with blood tests to check for substances known as tumor markers which indicate cancer may be present. An immature teratoma is assessed in stages according to how far it has spread and graded to describe how aggressive it is. There are three possible grades, with grade one representing a tumor that grows slowly and has less chance of spreading, and grade three a tumor that increases its size rapidly and is more likely to spread. Stages of cancer range from one to four, with stage one being assigned to tumors which have not spread at all and stage four to those which have spread throughout the body.

Management of an immature teratoma generally involves surgery to remove the tumor and its associated ovary. As the other ovary may be left in place, this means that many women are still able to have children following treatment. During the operation, the surgeon is able to inspect the tissues around the teratoma and examine other organs for any signs that the cancer has spread. Samples of tumor tissue may be taken and analyzed to determine the grade of the teratoma. For cancers which have remained inside the ovary and which are only grade one, surgery may be the only treatment required.

Where a cancer has spread outside the ovary, it is not always necessary to remove it all at once as chemotherapy is given to shrink the tumor cells. If any cancer remains following chemotherapy, another operation may be needed to get rid of it. The outlook for a patient with an immature teratoma depends on the grade of the tumor and the extent of spread, but in many cases it is positive.

TheHealthBoard is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.

Discussion Comments

TheHealthBoard, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.

TheHealthBoard, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.