Cardiac Masses (from a 15-Year Experience With 389 Surgical Cases)

Published:October 07, 2022DOI:
      Cardiac masses are highly heterogeneous and vary widely in their clinical presentation, imaging features, and survival outcomes. Our understanding is limited by their rarity and the fact that few are confirmed based on surgical pathology. We set out to provide a comprehensive analysis of all cardiac masses resected at our institution from 1999 to 2015, including imaging methods and histopathologic findings. We found papillary fibroelastomas (PFEs) to be the most commonly resected benign cardiac masses, followed by myxomas. Patients with PFEs most frequently presented with cerebrovascular accidents and transient ischemic attacks, whereas those with myxomas were more likely to present with arrhythmias and palpitations. In contrast, primary malignant cardiac masses were much rarer; angiosarcoma was the predominant subtype with a poor prognosis. Renal cell carcinomas were the most commonly discovered primary cancer for metastatic cardiac masses, and calcified amorphous tumors were the most prevalent non-neoplastic masses. For the detection of cardiac masses, transthoracic echocardiography was the most frequently used but least sensitive of the imaging methods analyzed. Transesophageal echocardiography (TEE) was the most sensitive imaging method. Fluorodeoxyglucose Positron Emission Tomography had similar sensitivity to TEE but was the least frequently used imaging method. Computed tomography and magnetic resonance imaging performed well in detecting most masses; PFEs, for which TEE was the most sensitive, was the exception. In conclusion, we found that PFEs were the most commonly resected benign cardiac masses, and TEE was the most accurate imaging method for the detection of all surgically removed masses at our institution.
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