Myxomas grow on a stalk like a head of cauliflower, flip-flopping around the heart. A piece of the jelly-like tumor can break off and cause a stroke, or the tumor can flop across the mitral valve and into the left ventricle, causing death. Their cause is unknown.
Gregg Greenough, MD
Specialty: Emergency Medicine
Location and Office HoursBrigham & Women's Hospital Emergency Dept
75 Francis St
Boston, MA 02115
- Tufts Health Plan
- Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center
- Brigham & Women's Hospital
What is a left atrial myxoma?
Baptist Health South Florida answeredA left atrial myxoma is a very rare and benign tumor.
Myxomas grow on a stalk like a head of cauliflower, flip-flopping around the heart. A piece of the jelly-like tumor can break off and cause a stroke, or the tumor can flop across the mitral valve and into the left ventricle, causing death. Their cause is unknown.Helpful? 1 person found this helpful.
Do heart abnormalities affect children differently than adults?
Piedmont Heart Institute answered
Other than congenital heart defects, which are present at birth, adults develop most heart abnormalities. Coronary artery disease, for example, along with its complications (heart failure, heart attack, arrhythmias) develops over many years. Congenital heart defects, such as a hole in the heart or a heart valve disorder, are often found and treated at birth, but your child will have to monitor and perhaps treat the condition for their entire life.
Why do they monitor my vital signs in the emergency room (ER)?
Kathleen Handal, MD, Emergency Medicine, answeredAn emergency room (ER) nurse is responsible for monitoring your vital signs. This includes heart rate, blood pressure, respiratory rate, temperature and pain level. Initially, the nurse is looking to see if the numbers are too high or too low and whether something has to be done right away to correct the problem. For instance:
- If your heart rate is 150 (which is high for an adult), we’re going to have to quickly determine why and treat the problem with medication.
- If your blood pressure is too low, say 60/40, we’re going to have to establish the cause and either give you medication or IV fluids to raise your blood pressure.
- If your breathing is shallow, we’ll try to uncover the reason and take steps to correct the problem.
- If your temperature is elevated, we’ll look for the cause while attempting to bring it back to normal.
- In certain cases, oxygenation is also monitored, as part of your respiratory assessment. If your oxygen saturation is low, let’s say 89%, or your condition is serious, oxygen will be given through your nose or a mask.
Pain is considered the fifth vital sign. There are different types of pain scales but the most commonly used one has a numerical rating scale. You’ll be asked regularly to report your pain level number. This is done for your comfort and safety and to decide the best care so please cooperate. The nurse will be documenting the times and your responses. This helps to determine if your condition is changing and how much pain medication you may need and how often. It also helps to identify when a type of pain medication isn’t working and when another one should be ordered.
Children, elderly or anyone who may be confused may be asked to express their pain level using visual aids. This type of scale provides a visual description of pain for those who are unable to verbally communicate their discomfort. By acknowledging or pointing to the image that best matches how they feel, the patient provides the nurse with a good sense of how much pain they’re experiencing.
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