Cardiac Masses in Echocardiography: A Pragmatic Review

Paolo Diego L'Angiocola, Roberto Donati
Journal of Cardiovascular Echography 2020, 30 (1): 5-14
Transthoracic echocardiography is a useful diagnostic technique for the identification of intracardiac and extracardiac masses, which can evaluate morphologic properties of the masses such as their location, attachment, shape, size, mobility, and possible hemodynamic-related implications. Apart from physiological variants and structural normal mimickers, echocardiography can detect principal intracardiac masses such as neoplasms, thrombi, vegetation, and extracardiac masses such as metastatic lesions. Moreover, transesophageal echocardiography can provide further details and provide higher accuracy in case a deeper examination of the mass is needed. This review will focus on the systematic evaluation of intra-/extracardiac masses including epidemiology and morphological and echocardiographic features, providing practical and technical tips to health-care professionals to achieve correct identification of the masses. General data on cardiac masses were extracted via PubMed/MEDLINE search engine from indexed reviews, original studies, and clinical case reports. The echocardiographic features of cardiac masses were reviewed according to the most relevant international cardiology and echocardiography scientific societies' position statements.

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