Other Cardiac Neoplasms

Rhabdomyoma: the most common primary tumour of the heart in children, is often congenital and has a close association with tuberous sclerosis. Most rhabdomyomas are multiple, occur in the ventricles and regress spontaneously.

Other benign conditions include mesothelial/monocytic incidental cardiac excrescences (MICE), papillary fibroelastoma, haemangioma, lipomatous hypertrophy (of the atrial septum), mesothelioma of the atrioventricular node, fibroma, paraganglioma, granular cell tumour, lymphangioma and schwannoma.

Primary malignant tumours: very rare and more commonly found in the right side of the heart, benign tumours in the left. Angiosarcoma is probably the commonest, others being leiomyosarcoma, rhabdomyosarcoma and Kaposi's sarcoma. Primary malignant lymphoma of the heart is very rare, most being diffuse large cell especially those occurring in AIDS. Secondary involvement of the heart by systemic lymphoma is more usual.

The pericardium is involved in approximately 8.5% of cases of disseminated malignancy but primary neoplasms are very rare, e.g., mesothelioma of the pericardial sac, germ cell tumour and angiosarcoma.

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