CASE STUDY – A 48 year-old woman presented to an urban clinic in Mumbai, India, with complaint of night sweats and persistent right lower quadrant abdominal pain, accompanied by 10 pound weight loss. Symptoms began approximately 1 month prior to presentation. She suffered from Type 2 Diabetes and mixed hyperlipidemia. She denied sick contacts or recent travel and reported no family history of malignancy. She denied alcohol, tobacco, or drug use. Physical exam revealed a healthy-appearing middle aged female in no acute distress; abdominal exam was significant for right-lower quadrant fullness and tenderness to palpation. Basic laboratory studies, including chemistry and complete blood count, were unremarkable. Ultrasound of the abdomen disclosed a heterogenous mass, 8.3 cm x 9.2 cm, as well as bilateral renal cysts; the pancreas could not be visualized due to bowel gas. A follow-up CT scan demonstrated a moderately differentiated teratoma bearing a striking resemblance to former US Vice-President Al Gore. Surgical resection was offered, but the woman declined and has since been lost to follow-up.
The presence of advanced teratomas, bearing fully formed teeth, hair, and neural tissue, has been commonly reported, but to our knowledge this is the first report of a human teratoma bearing the likeness of a living US politician, Nobel Peace Prize winner, and internet pioneer.
Praktar Bhanushali, MBBS
St. Philips Hospital, Mumbai
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