Association between congenital cardiovascular malformations and neuroblastoma

J Pediatr. 2004 Apr;144(4):444-8. doi: 10.1016/j.jpeds.2003.12.032.


Objective: We explored the association between neuroblastoma and congenital cardiovascular malformations (CCM), previously described in case reports.

Study design: Echocardiogram and chart reviews of a series of 158 patients with neuroblastoma and a control group of 192 children with leukemia were performed. The proportion of patients with CCM in each group was compared.

Results: Fourteen of the 70 (20%) patients with neuroblastoma and echocardiography had CCM, compared with 7 of the 192 (3.6%) patients with leukemia with echocardiograms (P=.0001). If all of the patients with neuroblastoma without echocardiograms (n=88) are considered to have normal cardiac anatomy, this difference remains significant (14 of 158 patients with neuroblastoma have CCM detected [8.9%] versus 7 of 192 patients with leukemia [3.6%]; P=.045). Neural crest-derived CCM were more common in patients with neuroblastoma, detected in 5 of 70 patients with neuroblastoma versus 2 of 192 patients with leukemia (P=.016). Congenital cardiovascular malformations in patients with neuroblastoma were associated with a cancer diagnosis at age less than 1 year and a lower neuroblastoma stage, but there was no association with tumor MYCN amplification.

Conclusions: Neuroblastoma and CCM may be associated. We recommend echocardiography for CCM screening in patients with newly diagnosed neuroblastoma.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Age Distribution
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Echocardiography
  • Female
  • Heart Defects, Congenital / complications*
  • Heart Defects, Congenital / epidemiology
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Neuroblastoma / complications*
  • Neuroblastoma / epidemiology
  • Neuroblastoma / pathology
  • Precursor Cell Lymphoblastic Leukemia-Lymphoma / complications
  • Precursor Cell Lymphoblastic Leukemia-Lymphoma / epidemiology
  • Pregnancy
  • Prevalence
  • United States / epidemiology