Twenty-six patients with an intracardiac myxoma underwent surgical resection at our institution from 1977 through 1992. Left atrial myxoma was diagnosed in 22 patients, left ventricular in 1, right atrial in 2, and right ventricular in 1. Six patients were asymptomatic; preoperative symptoms included dyspnea, arrhythmias, embolic episodes, and syncope. The diagnosis was established with transthoracic echocardiography in all cases but one. Surgery was performed in all cases with the aid of cardiopulmonary bypass with moderate hypothermia and cold crystalloid cardioplegia. One patient with a left ventricular myxoma died in a comatose state during the immediate postoperative period. Long-term clinical and echocardiographic evaluation was performed in 19 patients; results were excellent (all the patients were in New York Heart Association functional class I or II), and no recurrences were documented. The clinical characteristics, diagnostic methods, and surgical approach are presented and discussed.
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