Hypertrophic Pulmonary Osteoarthropathy (HPOA): An Unusual But Distinctive Complication of Lung Cancer

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Although it's uncommon, hypertrophic osteoarthropahy, or HPOA, is an odd and therefore memorable syndrome that can be a side effect of lung cancer. It features an abnormal proliferation of skin and bone tissue, primarily in the hands and feet. Patients can develop clubbing, which is most commonly associated with NSCLC (up to 1/3 of patients) more than SCLC (only about 5%), and adenocarcinoma in particular. Here's what it looks like:

Management Options for SVC Syndrome

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As I introduced in my last post, the superior vena cava SVC syndrome occurs in about 2-4% of lung cancer cases, and lung cancer is the leading reason for it. One of the most important factors in managing it is to determine, usually with CT imaging, the cause of the SVC syndrome -- generally whether it's caused from tumor or a blood clot, such as around a catheter.

Introduction to Superior Vena Cava (SVC) Syndrome

Article

Superior vena cava (SVC) syndrome is an infrequent but not rare complication of lung cancer, occurring in 2-4% of cases, most typically an early symptom that leads to the diagnosis. The SVC is the main vein that drains blood back into the heart from the upper body, and it runs in the middle of the chest on the right side, where it is vulnerable to being compressed by a nearby lung cancer or enlarged lymph nodes, such as from lung cancer or lymphoma.