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01.12.2011 | Case report | Ausgabe 1/2011 Open Access

Journal of Medical Case Reports 1/2011

Benign giant mediastinal schwannoma presenting as cardiac tamponade in a woman: a case report

Zeitschrift:
Journal of Medical Case Reports > Ausgabe 1/2011
Autoren:
Motoyasu Kato, Satomi Shiota, Kazuo Shiga, Haruhi Takagi, Hiroaki Mori, Mitsuaki Sekiya, Kenji Suzuki, Toshimasa Uekusa, Kazuhisa Takahashi
Wichtige Hinweise

Electronic supplementary material

The online version of this article (doi:10.​1186/​1752-1947-5-61) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.

Authors' contributions

MK and SS reviewed the clinical data and were major contributors in writing the manuscript. KS, HT, HM and KT were involved with patient management. MS performed the histological examination of the biopsy. KS was our patient's attending surgeon and provided information on our patient. TU analyzed histological data and performed the immunohistochemical analysis. All authors read and approved the final manuscript.

Competing interests

The authors declare that they have no competing interests.

Abstract

Introduction

Mediastinal schwannomas are typically benign and asymptomatic, and generally present no immediate risks. We encountered a rare case of a giant benign posterior mediastinal schwannoma, complicated by life-threatening cardiac tamponade.

Case presentation

We report the case of a 72-year-old Japanese woman, who presented with cardiogenic shock. Computed tomography of the chest revealed a posterior mediastinal mass 150 cm in diameter, with pericardial effusion. The cardiac tamponade was treated with prompt pericardial fluid drainage. A biopsy was taken from the mass, and after histological examination, it was diagnosed as a benign schwannoma, a well-encapsulated non-infiltrating tumor, originating from the intrathoracic vagus nerve. It was successfully excised, restoring normal cardiac function.

Conclusion

Our case suggests that giant mediastinal schwannomas, although generally benign and asymptomatic, should be excised upon discovery to prevent the development of life-threatening cardiopulmonary complications.

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