Delhi Doctors Save Newborn With Rare Heart Tumour

Baby Virin was born, to residents of Noida, with a rare congenital tumour called "intrapericardial teratoma" -- arising from the surface of the heart.

New Delhi : Doctors at a Delhi hospital conducted a lifesaving heart surgery on a two-day old baby boy with a rare heart tumour.

Baby Virin was born, to residents of Noida, with a rare congenital tumour called “intrapericardial teratoma” — arising from the surface of the heart. The tumour was detected on a routine ultrasound of his mother at 20 weeks of gestation, the Indraprastha Apollo Hospitals said in a statement on Tuesday.

The tumour had the potential of impacting the foetus growth within the womb. Hence, after the detection, his condition was monitored regularly every week by the means of foetus echocardiogram (to assess the growth of tumour and any effects on the functioning of the heart).

To reduce the pressure on his heart and carry his mother’s pregnancy to term, an excessive amount of fluid surrounding his heart needed to be removed once.

At birth, the baby weighed 3.2 kg but had trouble breathing. He was immediately intubated and put on a ventilator. A CT Angio was conducted, and showed a 7 cm across, lobulated giant intrapericardial tumour that was pushing the heart to the left and compressing the lung, said the doctors.

“The baby’s condition was precarious, and we planned to operate on him immediately. On day two after birth, we successfully removed the tumour, which was larger than the heart and was found to be attached to the surface of the heart, displacing the heart to the left. It had an attachment to the aorta and the right AV groove,” said Rajesh Sharma, Senior Pediatric Cardiac Surgeon at the hospital.

“Since tumour manipulation was causing a fall in the blood pressure, and due to its proximity to the right coronary artery, the removal of the tumour was accomplished by putting the baby on the heart-lung machine, on cardiopulmonary bypass. We managed to remove the tumour in one piece,” he added.

An intrapericardial teratoma arising from the heart is an exceedingly rare tumour of the foetus and the newborn. A major concern with such tumours during pregnancy is the life-threatening pressure that the tumour puts on the foetus’ heart and lungs.

“Fortunately there have been no significant deleterious effects of the tumour on the functioning of lungs or heart. Though the removal of tumour is supposed to be curative in most cases, but due to the rarity of the diagnosis, the baby will need regular follow-ups with tumour marker levels and regular echocardiographic examinations in the future. For now, the baby has shown good recovery and has been discharged,” said Ashutosh Marwah, Consultant Surgeon, Pediatric Cardiology, from the hospital.

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