Tumors of the Aorta



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Yasuda T, Yamamoto S, Yamaguchi S, Ishida Y
Leiomyosarcoma of the thoracic aorta.
Jpn J Thorac Cardiovasc Surg 1999 Oct;47(10):510-3

A patient clinically suspected of type IIIa dissecting aortic aneurysm underwent surgery. The descending thoracic aorta was found to be filled with a soft, yellow tumor and was replaced with a woven Dacron graft. Microscopy of the surgical specimen revealed large, atypical spindle cells with numerous mitoses in bundles intersecting at 90 degrees, suggesting leiomyosarcoma.



Raaf HN, Raaf JH
Sarcomas related to the heart and vasculature.
Semin Surg Oncol 1994 Sep-Oct;10(5):374-82

Soft tissue sarcoma is the most common malignant neoplasm of the heart, pericardium, and great vessels. Its presentation is infrequent, nonspecific, and subtle. For example, emboli from these tumors to the lungs or peripheral arteries may mimic thrombotic embolic disease. New noninvasive techniques such as echocardiography and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) aid in diagnosis and preoperative assessment. Angiosarcoma, the most common cardiac sarcoma, is aggressive and usually arises in the right atrium. Kaposi's sarcoma of the heart has been found in patients with AIDS and in immunosuppressed organ transplant recipients. Most primary sarcomas of the aorta and pulmonary artery (the elastic arteries) show minimal differentiation and are classified as "intimal, sarcomas," whereas leiomyosarcomas predominate in the muscular arteries and great veins. Surgical resection of any sarcoma of the vasculature, when feasible, is technically challenging but may result in cure or palliation. Adjuvant chemotherapy and radiation therapy can also relieve symptoms and prolong survival.



Lerakis S, Clements SD, Taylor WR, Robinson P, Martin RP
Transesophageal echocardiography detection of an esophageal sarcoma mimicking aortic dissection.
J Am Soc Echocardiogr 2000 Jun;13(6):619-21



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