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November 1957

Anaplastic Myxoma of Left Atrium

Author Affiliations

Palo Alto, Calif.

From the Departments of Medicine and Pathology, Palo Alto Hospital.

AMA Arch Intern Med. 1957;100(5):819-826. doi:10.1001/archinte.1957.00260110135019

Despite the fact that primary cardiac tumors have recently become so much less of a medical curiosity that individual cases are being reported less frequently, instances that present interesting and uncommon pathological and clinical features are still worthy of comment. This case of primary myxoma of the left atrium is interesting because of (1) the microscopic picture, which shows a high degree of cellular anaplasia, and (2) its clinical resemblance to coronary artery disease with myocardial infarction, progressive congestive failure, and pulmonary infarction, rather than the customary syndromes of mitral stenosis or embolic phenomena.

In 1942 Beck 1 suggested surgical removal of myxomatous masses, and in 1950, Coulter 2 drew attention to possible removal of such tumors through the atrium if recognized in time. With recent advances in cardiac surgery, such as the atrial well and the extracordial mechanical pumps,3,4 Primary myxoma of the heart becomes a potentially curable

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