In order to identify radiation-induced heart injury and to differentiate it from heart disease, an attempt was made to clarify post-irradiation heart injury by investigating the histological changes which occur during the interval between the irradiation and the time of demonstrable histological changes. A study was made of 83 autopsies in which most of the primary neoplasms were breast cancers, lung cancers and mediastinal tumors. In 43 of these autopsies the heart had been irradiated. Sixty eight dd-strain mice were also used for microautoradiographic study. Histological changes in the heart were observed in 27 of the 43 cases receiving irradiation. The limit of the tolerance dose to the heart for indicating histological changes was 1220 ret in humans. The latent period without histological changes was 2.7 months after initiation of radiation therapy. Greater heart injury was observed after re-irradiation or after the combined therapy of radiation and chemotherapy especially mitomycin (MMC). The histological findings after treatment with MMC were similar to those of radiation-induced heart injury. Results of the study indicate that the damage is secondary to radiation-induced changes of the vascula connective tissue.