JOURNAL ARTICLE
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Primary cardiac tumors: early and late results of surgical treatment in 91 patients.

BACKGROUND: Between March 1980 and September 1997, 91 patients underwent evaluation and treatment for primary cardiac neoplasms.

METHODS: Tumors were grouped into three categories: atrial myxomas, benign nonmyxomas, and malignant tumors. Survivors were contacted; no one was lost to follow-up. The mean follow-up for this series is 7 +/- 5 years.

RESULTS: Eighty-three patients were diagnosed with atrial myxomas (Male/Female: 29/54), average age 55 +/- 13 years. The hospital mortality was 3.6% (3/83), the late mortality was 6.5% (5/80). No recurrent myxomas have been identified clinically or by echocardiography in any patient. Three patients were diagnosed with benign nonmyxoma tumors. (Male/Female: 2/1), average age 64 +/- 8 years. There were no perioperative deaths and 1 patient died 4 years postoperatively from fibroma, with no linked causes. No recurrent tumors have been identified. Five patients were diagnosed with malignant tumors. (M/F: 1/4), average age 53 +/- 16 years. The hospital mortality was 20% (1/5); in 3 patients a redo-operation was necessary after 8, 11, and 12 months because of tumor recurrence. All patients died within 3 years of the first operation (mean 13 +/- 14 months).

CONCLUSIONS: Surgical resection, when possible, is the treatment of choice for all primary cardiac tumors. Patients with benign tumors are probably cured by resection and in our experience there was no known tumor recurrence. Effective palliation is possible with resection of malignant tumors, but more effective adjuvant therapy will be necessary to improve long-term prognosis.

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