Adrenocortical carcinoma with inferior vena cava, left renal vein and right atrium tumor thrombus extension

Pronio Annamaria, Piroli Silvia, Ciamberlano Bernardo, De Luca Alessandro, Marullo Antonino, Barretta Antonio, Mazzesi Giuseppe, Rossi Massimo, Chiara Montesani

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Introduction Adrenocortical carcinoma (ACC) is a rare, but highly aggressive type of tumor with an annual incidence of 1-2 cases per million. The prognosis is poor with a five-year overall survival rate of ∼35%. The poor prognosis may be related to the advanced stage at which the majority of ACCs are detected. Complete surgical resection remains the most effective treatment. Presentation of the case A 51-year-old female patient with recent onset of dyspepsia, ascites and peripheral edema was referred to our institution. Computed tomography (CT) and Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) displayed a 8 cm ∅ right adrenal mass. Moreover a tumor thrombus jutted out into the IVC, left renal vein and right atrium. An echocardiographic evaluation confirmed the presence of the tumor thrombus in the right atrium. The patient underwent adrenalectomy with removal of its intravascular extension with the assistance of cardiopulmonary bypass and hypothermia. Discussion ACC is a rare malignancy and ACC with tumor thrombus extension is a rare presentation. Patients can present with a variety of sign and symptoms, depending on the extent of the tumor. CT scan of chest and abdomen represents the gold standard in ACC staging while magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is preferred for tumor thrombus characterization. Complete surgical resection with a negative margin, R0 resection, is the only curative option for localized disease. Kidney sparing surgery should be performed when possible. Conclusion We present a rare case of Adrenocortical carcinoma with tumor thrombus extending into the IVC and right atrium. Complete resection with negative margins represents the best therapeutic chance for these patients.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1453
Pages (from-to)137-139
Number of pages3
JournalInternational Journal of Surgery Case Reports
Publication statusPublished - Jul 7 2015


  • Adrenocortical carcinoma
  • Inferior vena cava
  • Invasion
  • Thrombus

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery


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