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August 1974

The Spectrum of Diseases Associated With Thymoma: Coincidence or Syndrome?

Arch Intern Med. 1974;134(2):374-379. doi:10.1001/archinte.1974.00320200184029

Among 598 patients with thymoma (452 found in the literature and 146 from the Mayo Clinic), 422 (71%) suffered from 493 other diseases suspected of being associated with thymoma; 423 of these cases involved disorders of immunity. In contrast, there were only 21 patients (12%) each with one case of these other diseases among 177 Mayo Clinic patients with parathyroid adenoma; 19 of these involved immunity disorders. The total of 423 cases of diseases related to disorders of immunity included, among others, myasthenia gravis (44%), cytopenias (21%), cancer (17%), hypogammaglobulinemia (6%), polymyositis (5%), and systemic lupus erythematosus (2%). These findings merit consideration of thymoma together with certain diseases as a syndrome rather than as a spectrum of coincidental diseases.