Pediatric Thymoma Differential Diagnoses

Updated: Oct 14, 2021
  • Author: Richard A Bickel, MD; Chief Editor: Harumi Jyonouchi, MD  more...
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Diagnostic Considerations

Other medical problems associated with thymomas include the following: [15, 13]

  • Dermatomyositis

  • Polymyositis

  • Autoimmune thyroiditis

  • Pernicious anemia

  • Scleroderma

  • Rheumatoid arthritis

  • Raynaud phenomenon

  • Regional enteritis

  • Diabetes

  • Amyloidosis

  • Chronic hepatitis

  • Cushing syndrome

  • Addison disease

  • Undifferentiated thymic carcinoma (found to be associated with Epstein-Barr virus in a 12-year-old girl) [11]

Other abnormal growths of the anterior mediastinum include thymic cysts or thymic carcinoma (also referred to as malignant thymoma).

Other mediastinal masses in the differential diagnosis include the following: [15]

  • Thymolipoma

  • Mediastinal germ cell tumor

  • Mediastinal lymphangioma (rare tumors that predominantly occur in children)

  • Mediastinal goiter

  • Mediastinal parathyroid adenomas (uncommon and rarely cause a discernible mass)

Levels of serum beta-subunit human chorionic gonadotrophin (beta-HCG) or alpha-fetoprotein (AFP) may be elevated in germ cell tumors.

Differential Diagnoses