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MINERVA UROLOGICA E NEFROLOGICA
A Journal on Nephrology and Urology
Indexed/Abstracted in: EMBASE, PubMed/MEDLINE, Science Citation Index Expanded (SciSearch), Scopus
Impact Factor 0,536
Minerva Urologica e Nefrologica 1998 December;50(4):241-6
Hormonal profile of patients with Leydig cell tumors: a urologic cause of gynecomastia
Sciarra A., Casale P., Di Nicola S., Di Chiro C., Di Silverio F.
University of Rome “La Sapienza” - Rome, Department of Urology “U. Bracci”
It is possible to hypothesize an alternative role for estrogens as a predisposing factor for testicular abnormalities: estrogen exposure during development in perinatal life may initiate cellular changes which would require estrogen and/or androgen later in life for promotion to hyperplasia or neoplasia. We reviewed the literature on Leydig cell tumors and the hormonal modifications they induce. In adult patients with Leydig cell tumors, although the serum estrogen (E2) and testosterone (T) varied, the T/E2 ratio was constantly low, and the chorionic gonadotropin administration produced an higher estrogen response than in normal men. Hormonal follow-up after orchidectomy for Leydig cell tumors has not been frequently described, and both normalization and lack of normalization of T, E2, gonadotropins and hCG have been reported. In the last part of the review we analyzed the principal urologic causes of gynecomastia in men. Testicular failure, either primary or secondary is a frequently found etiology for gynecomastia. Leydig cell tumors may elevate estrogen levels, and approximately 20% of patients with these tumors have gynecomastia.