Pycnodysostosis with novel gene mutation and sporadic medullary thyroid carcinoma: A case report

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Abstract

Rationale:

Pycnodysostosis is a rare autosomal recessive skeletal dysplasia caused by a mutation in the cathepsin K encoded by cathepsin K gene (CTSK). Medullary thyroid carcinoma (MTC) is also a relatively rare type of primary thyroid carcinoma.

Patient concerns:

A 31-year-old woman presenting a short stature and a palpable nodule in the front of her neck that had gradually increased in size during the last 2 years was referred to our department. She has experienced multiple fractures at lower limbs in the last 2 decades.

Diagnoses:

The patient's clinical examination revealed short stature, underweight, a prominent forehead, stubby fingers, and a fixed nodule in the right thyroid lobe. Intraoral examination revealed multiple clinically malposed and missing teeth, as well as chronic periodontitis with a narrow and grooved palate. Radiographic examination revealed typical widely separated cranial sutures and an open anterior/posterior fontanel with an obtuse gonial angle, acroosteolysis, and osteosclerosis with narrowed medullary cavities. Ultrasonography of the thyroid gland showed a marked hypoechoic solid nodule in the right lobe in which tumor cell clusters were confirmed by ultrasound-guided fine needle aspiration biopsy and was suspected to be MTC. Laboratory tests revealed dramatically elevated serum calcitonin >2000 pg/L (reference range: 0–5 pg/L) and carcinoembryonic antigen (CEA) 134.37 ng/mL (reference range: 0–5 ng/mL). Genotypic screening revealed compound heterozygous mutations in the CTSK gene (c.158delA, P.Asn53Thr/c.C830T, P.Ala277Val) but no mutation associated with the familial forms of MTC.

Interventions:

The patient underwent a total thyroidectomy with right-sided functional neck dissection.

Outcomes:

CEA and serum calcitonin decreased significantly postthyroidectomy, and no further fracture has been reported by the patient so far.

Lessons:

The present study is the first to report a rare case of the coexistence of pycnodysostosis with a compound CTSK gene mutation and sporadic MTC. Radiological techniques and gene analysis play key roles in the definitive diagnosis.

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