Clinical and echocardiographic characteristics of papillary fibroelastomas: A retrospective and prospective study in 162 patients

Jing Ping Sun, Craig R. Asher, Xing Sheng Yang, Georgiana G. Cheng, Gregory M. Scalia, An Malek G Massed, Brian P. Griffin, Norman B. Ratliff, William J. Stewart, James D. Thomas*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

381 Scopus citations


Background - Cardiac papillary fibroelastoma (CPF) is a primary cardiac neoplasm that is increasingly detected by echocardiography. The clinical manifestations of this entity are not well described. Methods and Results - In a 16-year period, we identified patients with CPF from our pathology and echocardiography databases. A total of 162 patients had pathologically confirmed CPF. Echocardiography was performed in 141 patients with 158 CPFs, and 48 patients had CPFs that were not visible by echocardiography (<0.2 cm), leaving an echocardiographic subgroup of 93 patients with 110 CPFs. An additional 45 patients with a presumed diagnosis of CPF were identified. The mean age of the patients was 60±16 years of age, and 46.1% were male. Echocardiographically, the mean size of the CPFs was 9±4.6 mm; 82.7% occurred on valves (aortic more than mitral), 43.6% were mobile, and 91.4% were single. During a follow-up period of 11±22 months, 23 of 26 patients with a prospective diagnosis of CPF that was confirmed by pathological examination had symptoms that could be attributable to embolization. In the group of 45 patients with a presumed diagnosis of CPF, 3 patients had symptoms that were likely due to embolization (incidence, 6.6%) during a follow-up period of 552±706 days. Conclusions - CPFs are generally small and single, occur most often on valvular surfaces, and may be mobile, resulting in embolization. Because of the potential for embolic events, symptomatic patients, patients undergoing cardiac surgery for other lesions, and those with highly mobile and large CPFs should be considered for surgical excision.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2687-2693
Number of pages7
Issue number22
StatePublished - Jun 5 2001


  • Cardiovascular event
  • Echocardiography
  • Fibroelastoma

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Physiology (medical)


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