Last reviewed 12/2022

classification of germ cell tumours

There are two major classifications of germ cell tumours

  • the British Testicular Tumour Panel (BTTP) classification
  • the World Health Organization (WHO) classification (1)

British (BTTP) classification

WHO classifications



Spermatocytic seminoma

Spermatocytic seminoma


Non-seminomatous germ cell tumour

- teratoma differentiated (TD)

- teratoma

- malignant teratoma intermediate (MTI)

- embryonal carcinoma/yolk sac tumour with     teratoma

- malignant teratoma undifferentiated (MTU)

- embryonal carcinoma

- yolk sac tumour

- yolk sac tumour

- malignant teratoma trophoblastic

- choriocarcinoma

Testicular tumours - approximate percentages with respect to incidences of different testicular tumours

Benign tumours include:

  • Leydig or interstitial cell tumour 1-3%
    • Leydig cell tumor is a testicular tumor with a low incidence accounting for 1-3% of testicular neoplasms
      • manifests in the preadolescent or in the older people. It is a non-germ cell tumor of the testis and is included in the group of specialized gonadal stromal neoplasms. The frequent clinical presentation is that of a testicular nodule with or without endocrine manifestations.
  • Sertoli cell tumour < 1%

Malignant tumours include:

  • seminoma - peak incidence 30-40 years - 40%
  • teratoma - peak incidence 20-30 years - 30%
  • mixed teratoma-seminoma - peak 25-35 years -15%
  • lymphoma - usually, non-Hodgkin's type with peak from 60-70 years <7%