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Eur J Cardiothorac Surg. 2011 Jun;39(6):e184-5. doi: 10.1016/j.ejcts.2011.01.038. Epub 2011 Mar 3.

Spontaneous fistulization of a caseous calcification of the mitral annulus: an exceptional cause of stroke.

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Department of Cardiac Surgery, Hôpital Cardiologique du Haut-Levêque, 33600 Pessac, France.


We present the case of a caseous calcification of the mitral annulus, responsible for two strokes, in a 72-year-old female patient. The brain computed tomography (CT) scan confirmed the presence of a calcific embolus. The echocardiography showed a liquidy, pseudotumoral mass combined with numerous calcifications located in the posterior part of the mitral annulus and extending toward the inferior surface of the left ventricle. During surgery, we found a direct communication between the caseous necrosis and the lumen of the left ventricle at the level of its inferior wall. We performed a valve repair procedure and excision of the caseous necrosis, combined with injection of bioglue into the cavity, to avoid recurrence. Six months after the procedure, the patient was in good health, and had no recurrence of stroke with a satisfactory echocardiography. This is the first description of spontaneous fistulization of a caseous necrosis in the lumen of the left ventricle, explaining a new mechanism for cerebral embolism during the course of calcifying diseases of the mitral annulus.

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