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J Thorac Imaging. 1999 Jul;14(3):152-71.

Tumors of the thymus.

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Department of Radiology, University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, PA 15213, USA.


Thymic neoplasms are a common cause of an anterior mediastinal mass and may be benign or malignant. Thymic cysts are congenital or acquired and may be associated with a thymic malignancy. True thymic hyperplasia and thymic lymphoid hyperplasia may enlarge the thymus and simulate a neoplasm. Thymoma and thymic carcinoma are epithelial malignancies with distinct clinicopathologic features. Thymic carcinoid is a rare aggressive neuroendocrine malignancy associated with multiple endocrine neoplasia 1. Thymolipoma is a benign neoplasm. Hodgkin and non-Hodgkin lymphoma may primarily or secondarily involve the thymus. Primary mediastinal germ cell tumors may arise primarily within the thymus and include mature teratoma, seminoma, and non-seminomatous malignant germ cell tumors.

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