Sertoli Cell Tumor in Dogs
Sertoli cell tumors are a form of testicular tumor in dogs, and are linked with undescended testicles. Typically, up to 14 percent sertoli cell tumors in dogs are malignant and will metastasize to surrounding lymph nodes in the body and other organs.
Symptoms and Types
The signs and symptoms of sertoli cell tumors include:
- Skin changes may become apparent
- One testicle that is larger than the other, with wasting or shriveling of the other testicle
- Feminization syndrome, a condition where a male dog takes on uncharacteristic female qualities (e.g., dog’s penis may shrivel or shrink in appearance, there may be abnormal breast development, and the dog may adopt a female position to urinate)
- An abdominal mass may become palpable (found by touch examination) if a testicle has not descended -- suggesting that the testicle remained in the abdominal cavity
Sertoli cell tumors in dogs are usually caused by cryptorchidism, or undescended testicles. Aging male dogs are most likely to develop sertoli cell tumors.
To diagnose a sertoli cell tumor, your veterinarian will first want to rule out other potential causes for a tumor or mass. These may include:
- An interstitial cell tumor (a non-cancerous tumor in the testicle)
- Hyperadrenocorticism (too much of the hormone cortisol, a stress hormone)
- Seminoma (a different type of testicular cancer)
Other tests that may help with diagnosis include screening for certain types of anemia (low blood iron), low white blood cell counts, and low blood platelet counts. complete blood profile will be conducted, including a chemical blood profile, and a complete blood count.
Dogs with sertoli cell tumors will usually have abnormally high levels of certain hormones, including serum estradiol and progesterone. Typically an animal with a sertoli cell tumor will have some degree of feminization, even if it is only evident at the hormonal level.
A cell that aids in clotting
A hormone that is created at the time of pregnancy
The sex organ of male animals; used in the production of sperm
The prediction of a disease’s outcome in advance
Small structures that filter out the lymph and store lymphocytes
A condition of the blood in which normal red blood cell counts or hemoglobin are lacking.
The type of female hormone produced in the ovaries that contributes to sex drive and female characteristics
The area inside a given tissue or organ
The space in the abdomen that holds the major digestive organs in an animal. Normally referred to as the area between the diaphragm and the pelvis. Also referred to as the peritoneal cavity.
Something that becomes worse or life threatening as it spreads