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BACKGROUND: Primary cardiac tumors are exceedingly rare. Amongst the malignant types, sarcomas are the most frequently encountered. Treatment includes attempted aggressive surgical resection as the only curative option. We report our experience. METHODS: During the last five years, six patients presented at our institution with complex cardiac tumors with different underlying diagnoses and were at different stages of their disease. RESULTS: 6 patients with median age of 30-years-old underwent surgery in our centre. 3 patients had undergone debulking prior to surgery at our institution. In all patients, the tumor involved the right ventricle. One patient had biventricular involvement, the septum was involved in 4 patients, 2 patients had extracardiac growth, one invading both great vessels, one involving the pericardium and the hilar structures on the right side. Complete resection was achieved in 4 cases, 3 with successful resection-reconstruction, one with cardiectomy and implantation of a total artificial heart. 5 patients are currently alive, 4 free of recurrence. CONCLUSIONS: Complete radical surgery is the only curative treatment for patients suffering from cardiac tumors. The availability of mechanical circulatory support allows for a more radical surgical approach even including total cardiectomy, possibly resulting in a significant increase in R0 resections.

Original publication




Journal article


Surg Oncol

Publication Date





190 - 194


Cardiac sarcoma, Primary cardiac tumors, Surgical resection, Total artificial heart