Primary cardiac sarcoma in pregnancy: A case report and review of the literature

Giovanni Ceresoli, Paolo Passoni, Stefano Benussi, Ottavio Alfieri, Giacomo Dell'Antonio, Angelo Bolognesi

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Primary cardiac sarcoma (PCS) is a rare disease with a poor prognosis, because of diagnostic delay, therapeutic difficulties, and high metastatic potential. Surgery is the standard treatment. A case of PCS in pregnancy is reported, with a review of published surgical series of PCSs, focusing on the role of surgery and adjuvant therapy. Prompt surgery improved cardiac function and patients' outcome in comparison with untreated cases. The role of adjuvant treatment was analyzed only in a few series, mainly without distinction between postoperative chemotherapy and radiotherapy; adjuvant therapy improved survival in the larger series of resected PCSs. Only three other cases of PCS in pregnancy were reported. In the present case, resection was performed with no major complication for the mother and the infant. Even if the patient's survival was short, cardiac surgery allowed prolonging of pregnancy until an acceptable possibility of fetal survival was reached. Although resection is not curative in most cases, surgery remains the treatment of choice for PCS and has a definite palliative significance. The role of postoperative chemotherapy and radiotherapy is difficult to ascertain; however, adjuvant chemotherapy seems advisable in high-grade tumors.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)460-465
Number of pages6
JournalAmerican Journal of Clinical Oncology: Cancer Clinical Trials
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - Oct 1999


  • Adjuvant therapy
  • Cardiac tumors
  • Heart
  • Pregnancy
  • Primary cardiac sarcoma
  • Surgery

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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