Pineal yolk sac tumour

Pineal yolk sac tumours are rare type of extra gonadal yolk sac tumours. They make up a small fraction of all intracranial germ cell tumours and an even small fraction of pineal masses overall. 

CSF biochemistry may demonstrate elevated levels of alpha-fetoprotein which is helpful but not diagnostic of yolk sac tumours, as both immature teratomas and embryonal cell carcinomas by also elevate AFP 1.


As with other germ cell tumours, there may be an association with Down syndrome 1-3.


In up to 50% of cases these tumours co-exist with other germ cell tumour histology 4

Radiographic features

No specific imaging findings have been identified, with their appearance being similar to other germ cell tumours of the pineal region 4.

Related articles

Pineal region masses

The pineal region is anatomically complex and plays host to a number of unique masses and tumours as well as potentially affected by many entities seen more frequently elsewhere in the brain. 

General reading


Germ cell tumours

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