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The following electronic only articles are published in conjunction with this issue of Heart.
Azygos continuation of interrupted inferior vena cava in association with sick sinus syndrome
R Vijayvergiya, M N Bhat, R M Kumar, S G Vivekanand, A Grover
Various diagnostic and therapeutic procedures of the right side of the heart and the systemic venous system have increased the need for ready access to the inferior vena cava (IVC) through the transfemoral route. Anatomical variations or obstruction of the IVC can make these procedures difficult. The case of 47 year old woman with an interrupted infrahepatic IVC with azygos continuation accompanied by sick sinus syndrome and a structurally normal heart is reported. Negotiating a temporary pacing lead from the IVC to the right atrium was difficult. Ultimately, the lead took the course from the IVC to azygos vein to superior vena cava to right atrium to right ventricular apex. Permanent VVI pacing through the right subclavian route was uneventful, as the superior vena cava and its tributaries had a normal course. An awareness of the existence of these anomalies before pacing can lead to the use of an alternative route for pacing, which may avoid undue delay of an otherwise urgently needed procedure.
Primary left atrial angiosarcoma mimicking severe mitral valve stenosis
M Engelen, C Bruch, A Hoffmeier, C Kersting, J Stypmann
Primary cardiac tumours are quite rare and most of these tumours are benign. In this report, a patient presented with heart failure symptoms attributable to severe mitral valve stenosis. Echocardiography showed a dense left atrial mass causing functional mitral valve obstruction. The morphological and intraoperative presentation was highly suggestive of a myxoma but histopathological examination found a primary pedunculated cardiac angiosarcoma. The role of two dimensional and transoesophageal echocardiography in the assessment of cardiac masses and tumours is discussed.
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