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Amyloid disease of the heart
You are in the middle of a diagnostic evaluation, thus I can only comment on amyloidosis, an abnormal protein usually produced by cells in your bone marrow that can be deposited in any tissue or organ.
Cardiac amyloidosis ("stiff heart syndrome") occurs when amyloid deposits take the place of normal heart muscle, and is a cause of what is called a restrictive cardiomyopathy. However, a number of tests are not consistent with that diagnosis at this point (unless this is very early in the disease process). Severe left atrial enlargement can occur in association with hypertension, aortic stenosis, mitral incompetence, mitral stenosis and hypertrophic cardiomyopathy.
An Echocardiogram of Severe left atrial enlargement and mitral stenosis:
The following tests may be performed to help diagnose cardiac amyloidosis:
- Chest or abdomen CT scan
- Coronary angiography
- Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)
- Nuclear heart scans (MUGA, RNV)
- Sometimes, a cardiac biopsy is used to confirm the diagnosis.
Amyloidosis is often seen in people with multiple myeloma, a cancer of the plasma cells in the bone marrow. Senile amyloidosis is caused by overproduction of a different protein and occurs in older patients.
Hope this helps,
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