n Cardiovascular Journal of South Africa - Diaphragmatic hernia mimicking an atrial mass : a two-dimensional echocardiographic pitfall and a cause of postprandial syncope : case report

Volume 15, Issue 4
  • ISSN : 1680-0745



A large hiatal hernia constitutes a form of posterior mediastinal mass that can encroach on the posterior aspects of the heart. During two-dimensional echocardiography this phenomenon may be confused with an intra-atrial mass or various other posterior mediastinal masses. Furthermore, such a large hiatal hernia encroaching on the heart may cause syncope. We present such a case and the various possible mechanisms of syncope, as well as review the two-dimensional echocardiographic pitfalls in these patients.

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