Papillary fibroelastoma of the heart

Papillary fibroelastomas are rare benign primary cardiac tumours. However, of the primary cardiac tumours, they are one of the commonest to occur in relation to the cardiac valves (may account for 75% of valvular tumours 10). 

Its estimated prevalence ranges between <0.01 to 0.33% 5. There may be slightly increased male predilection 10.

Characterised by a papillary growth of stromal tissue composed of a central dense amorphous fibrous core and surrounding layer of loose connective tissue. There is also a layer of elastic fibres (hallmark) which is variable in distribution. This is further surrounded by a single layer of hypertrophied endothelium. 

Approximately 80% occur in relation to either the aortic or mitral valve 2 while tricuspid and pulmonary involvement is much rarer.

Typically seen as a small (~1.5 cm 5) well-defined pedunculated mass in relation to a valve.

  • T1: intermediate intensity 1,2
  • T2: intermediate to high intensity 1,2
  • SSFP Cine: may be useful for showing mobility (often highly mobile)

Surgical resection of the tumour is the treatment of choice.

  • systemic embolisation of tumour or thrombotic components 5
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Article information

rID: 10543
System: Cardiac
Synonyms or Alternate Spellings:
  • Cardiac papillary fibroelastoma
  • Cardiac fibroelastoma
  • Fibroelastoma of cardiac valve
  • Fibroelastoma of cardiac valves
  • Cardiac fibroelastomas
  • Papillary fibroelastomas
  • Papillary fibroelastomas (heart)
  • Cardiac valve fibroelastoma

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