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J Cardiovasc Imaging. 2019 Jan;27(1):37-47. English. Original Article.
Cianciulli TF , Cozzarin A , Soumoulou JB , Saccheri MC , Méndez RJ , Beck MA , Gagliardi JA , Lax JA .
Division of Cardiology, Hospital of the Government of the City of Buenos Aires Dr. Cosme Argerich, Buenos Aires, Argentina.
Researchers of the Ministry of Health of the Government of the City of Buenos Aires, Buenos Aires, Argentina.


Cardiac myxomas are the most frequent cardiac tumors. Although histologically benign, in some cases myxomas may be lethal, due to impairment of cardiac dynamics and their thromboembolic potential. The study aimed to assess the clinical presentation of cardiac myxomas and their correlation with echocardiographic features and to describe the perioperative results and long-term outcome of surgically treated patients.


A prospective study of 53 patients with cardiac myxomas who were operated at Hospital Argerich, followed clinically and with echocardiography from 1993 until 2013. All patients underwent echocardiographic studies.


The patient's mean age was 53 ± 16 years (62.3% were women). The most common findings were dyspnea followed by embolic events. Most tumors were localized in the left atrium (77.4%), mainly in the fossa ovalis (63%). Mean size of the tumors was 4.76 x 3.50 cm. Tumors were generally mobile (88%) and went beyond the valve plane, causing mild mitral or tricuspid valve obstruction (58%) and dilation of the respective atrial chamber. Patients whose tumors were obstructive had higher pulmonary artery systolic pressures (50 vs 33 mmHg p < 0.01). According to the echocardiographic appearance 67% of tumors had a smooth surface and the remaining 32% had a villous surface. All patients with embolic manifestations had tumors with a villous surface.


Clinical presentation relates to the ultrasound characteristics of myxomas. Smooth tumors are larger, occur with obstructive symptoms, and benefit from an elective surgery, whereas villous myxomas entailed a high embolic risk and require prompt surgical treatment.

Copyright © 2019. Korean Association of Medical Journal Editors.