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Heart cancer?

  1. Feb 29, 2004 #1
    While assessing the various tissues in the human body, I was unable to recall ever having heard of the cardiovascular system being affected by cancer. Does cancer of the heart exist, and what is its incidence relative to other cancers?
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Mar 1, 2004 #2

    Tsu

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    In the more than 30 years that I've worked in the medical field, I've only come across one or two patients with a tumor in the heart, so they do exist, but apparently are quite rare. I'll see if I can come up with more information for you.
     
  4. Mar 1, 2004 #3

    Tsu

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  5. Mar 1, 2004 #4

    Tsu

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  6. Mar 1, 2004 #5

    Tsu

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  7. Mar 1, 2004 #6
    Tsunami,

    A wealth of information. I am especially sorry for children affected by disease, thankfully in these cases a rare occurrence.

    Briefly, a primary tumor here is one that has originated in the heart, and a secondary tumor is one that has migrated to the heart? Is a myxoma necessarily a cancerous heart tumor?

    As to the last reference, "the first human primary cardiac tumor was reported by Columbus in 1559...". I thought Columbus discovered the Tropic of Cancer in 1492!
     
  8. Mar 1, 2004 #7

    Tsu

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    Me, too. I have such a HUGE respect for Pediatric health care workers. I did mobile CT at Children's hospital in Oakland for only six weeks before I was crying (literally) for a replacement.

    No, in fact, they are generally benign (noncancerous). They are mostly just an overgrowth of connective tissue - usually in the upper chambers of the heart (rt. or lt. atrium). The only effective treatment, however, is surgical intervention. If allowed to continue to grow, it would eventually severely compromise the blood flow within the heart.

     
  9. Mar 1, 2004 #8

    Tsu

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  10. Mar 1, 2004 #9
    One must need skill and experience to read those images correctly.
     
  11. Mar 1, 2004 #10

    Tsu

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    That's why God made Radiologists!! :wink:
     
  12. Mar 1, 2004 #11
    Is "radiologist" synonymous with "mutant"?
     
  13. Mar 2, 2004 #12

    Tsu

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    I've known a few that might fit that category...
     
  14. Mar 9, 2004 #13

    adrenaline

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    Don't know if this was mentioned but there is something called primary cardiac lymphoma, a rare and malignant disease (similar to a non hodgkin's lymphoma) but arisng from the heart as a primary rather than secondary source.
     
    Last edited: Mar 9, 2004
  15. Mar 9, 2004 #14

    Monique

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    Would that be from the endothelial/smooth muscle cells of the heartvessels, or is it the muscle cells from the heart itself? Do the heart muscle cells divide? That's why it must be so rare..
     
  16. Mar 9, 2004 #15
    That's the crux of this thread, I believe.
     
  17. Mar 9, 2004 #16

    Monique

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    Well, it amazes me that the single most used tissue of the body, under oxidative stress all the time, would not regenerate..
     
  18. Mar 9, 2004 #17
    Do smooth muscle cells devote themselves to constant activity in lieu of enabling regeneration? What then allows the ontogeny of organs consisting of smooth muscle?
     
  19. Mar 9, 2004 #18

    adrenaline

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    Not sure about the primary cardiac lymphoma but the accepted paradigm considers the adult heart as a postmitotic organ, which possesses a relatively constant number of myocytes from shortly after birth to adulthood is now being questioned in the field of cardiology and physiology. Especially since we see cardiac remodeling and amazing recovery after large myocardial infarctions (mostly with the advent of adding ACE (angiotentsion converting enzyme) inhibitors to post MI patients are we seeing alot of this) This notion is questioned by those who demonstrate that although most adult myocytes are terminally differentiated, there is a small and continuously renewed subpopulation of cycling myocytes produced by the differentiation of cardiac stem-like cells.

    This postulated inability of the myocardium to form new myocytes starting in the early postnatal period has straightjacketed and limited cardiovascular research in conceptually significant ways.

    There is more and more research that is upsetting or seriously questioning this old paradigm .
     
    Last edited: Mar 9, 2004
  20. Mar 10, 2004 #19

    Monique

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    The heart is no made up of smooth muscle cells, but in the lining of vessels there are (not sure if that means the inner lining of the heart too).
     
  21. Mar 10, 2004 #20
    Hi all,


    Ok so cancer of the heart is quite rare but does anyone know why it it is more rare than cancer of other organs?


    Thanks

    Charles
     
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