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CARCINOID HEART DISEASE
Carcinoid heart disease is right-sided endocardial and valvular fibrosis secondaryto serotonin exposure in patients with carcinoid tumors that have metastasized to the liver. It is a plaque-like thickening (endocardial fibrosis) of the endocardium and valves of the right side of the heart. Many patients experience carcinoid syndrome (also related to secretion of serotonin and other metabolically active products of the tumors), characterized by skin flushing, diarrhea, cramping, bronchospasm, wheezing, and telangiectasias. The diagnosis can be established by demonstrating elevated urinary 5-hydroxyindoleacetic acid (5-HIAA), a metabolite of the break-down of serotonin via monoamine oxidase.
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