Heart transplantation: an approach to treating primary cardiac sarcoma?

Peter Uberfuhr, Bruno Meiser, Alexandra Fuchs, Costas Schulze, Hermann Reichenspurner, Martin Falk, Max Weiss, Bernd Wintersperger, Rolf Issels, Bruno Reichart
Journal of Heart and Lung Transplantation 2002, 21 (10): 1135-9
Treating rare, primary cardiac soft-tissue sarcomas (C-STS) with heart transplantation (HTx) is controversial. Conventional tumor resection only partially alleviates the disease, and patients die of local recurrence of the tumor or of distant metastases. Heart transplantation offers the opportunity to eradicate the primary malignancy completely. In our experience of 4 patients with C-STS indicates, HTx followed by post-operative chemotherapy does not affect the long-term outcome. However, pre-operative chemotherapy can regress tumors in chemosensitive C-STS and potentially eradicate early micrometastases. Consecutive HTx for responders may then offer a chance of long-term survival.

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