Irish Journal of Medical Science

, Volume 180, Issue 1, pp 271–273 | Cite as

Primary cardiac lymphoma: diagnostic tools and treatment challenges

  • R. Bambury
  • F. Gallagher
  • J. D. Dodd
  • D. Fennelly
Case Report


Primary cardiac lymphoma (PCL) is a rare malignancy and the optimal treatment strategy remains uncertain. It appears to respond much better to systemic chemotherapy than to surgery and it should be considered in the differential diagnosis of all cardiac tumours before definitive management is undertaken. We report a case of this rare disorder treated successfully with a combination of rituximab and cyclophosphamide, adriamycin, vincristine and prednisolone. The patient developed recurrent unstable ventricular tachycardia (VT) post-chemotherapy secondary to extensive scarring at the tumour site. The tumour as well as the post-treatment scarring is well illustrated by cardiac magnetic resonance imaging highlighting its usefulness in this setting. An implantable cardioverter defibrillator (ICD) was placed. This is only the second case in the literature of PCL to have an ICD placed for recurrent VT. A brief literature review is included.


Primary cardiac lymphoma Cardiac tumours Non-Hodgkins lymphoma 


Conflict of interest statement



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Copyright information

© Royal Academy of Medicine in Ireland 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • R. Bambury
    • 1
  • F. Gallagher
    • 1
  • J. D. Dodd
    • 2
  • D. Fennelly
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Medical OncologySt Vincents University HospitalDublin 4Ireland
  2. 2.Department of RadiologySt Vincents University HospitalDublin 4Ireland

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