While sympathetic neuroblastomas were first described by Marchand, in 1891, as being derived from neural structures, it was not until 1910 that they were established as a separate and distinct clinical entity by the histologic observations of Wright.1 Since that time many cases have been reported and much information has accumulated regarding their clinical picture and prognosis.
They are neurogenic in origin and are sometimes referred to as neuroblastomas or sympathoblastomas. Two disease syndromes have been described. The first, described by Pepper,2 emphasized the adrenal origin, with early metastases in the liver, and the early age at which the tumor appears. The second type, which was described by Hutchinson,3 occurred somewhat later. There were metastatic lesions in the skull, orbits and long bones. A moderate degree of anemia was present.
Later studies have shown not only that these two types overlap but that they are indistinguishable pathologically