Tailgut cyst (retrorectal cystic hamartoma): Report of a case and review of the literature

Christopher Killingsworth, Thomas R. Gadacz

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Tailgut cysts are rare congenital lesions arising from remnants of normally regressing postanal primitive gut. They often present in middle-aged women with perirectal symptoms and a retrorectal multicystic mass. These cysts have occasionally shown malignant transformation. We report a case of a tailgut cyst occurring in a 25-year-old African-American female. The differential diagnosis of a retrorectal mass is briefly explored, and the etiology, diagnostic strategy, and surgical approach for tailgut cysts is examined. We also report an extensive literature review to examine clinical characteristics and surgical data for 43 cases of tailgut cysts spanning 16 years.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)666-673
Number of pages8
JournalAmerican Surgeon
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 1 2005

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery


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