Sudden death associated with benign cardiac tumour: A case report and review of literature

  • E.J Ogbemudia
  • E.C Aghimien
Keywords: Sudden Death, Benign, Cardiac tumour


Sudden death secondary to cardiac tumour is rare and it has not been well documented in our locale. We therefore present a 38 year old woman who presented with features of acute heart failure. Chest X-ray revealed cardiomegaly, and prominent pulmonary vessels. There were multiple atrial ectopics on electrocardiography. Echocardiography revealed a large mass in the left atrium which protruded into the mitral valve orifice. A diagnosis of a primary cardiac tumour most probably an atrial myxoma was made. She was referred to a cardiothoracic centre for surgical resection but she couldn’t afford surgery. Unfortunately, she was said to have developed sudden severe dyspnoea and died shortly afterwards. Atrial myxoma is a rare benign cardiac tumour but it can result in sudden death if surgery is delayed. It should therefore be managed as a surgical emergency to prevent this fatal outcome.


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eISSN: 1596-6569