Diagnosing Germ Cell Tumors
In addition to a complete medical history and physical examination, diagnostic tests for germ cell tumors often include the following:
- Blood tests: These may require taking samples for blood chemistry, blood cell count, genetics and certain proteins called tumor markers such as alpha-fetoprotein (AFP) and the beta subunit of the human chorionic gonadotropin (b-HCG) that are produced by some germ cell tumors.
- Biopsy: A sample of tissue is removed and examined under a microscope to evaluate cell types, the extent of disease and other factors.
- Imaging studies: There are several ways to get a clear picture of the tumor and surrounding structures, including: