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Pericardial Effusion and Cardiac Tamponade

Pericardial effusion is the accumulation of excess fluid in the pericardial space around the heart. The pericardium Pericardium A conical fibroserous sac surrounding the heart and the roots of the great vessels (aorta; venae cavae; pulmonary artery). Pericardium consists of two sacs: the outer fibrous pericardium and the inner serous pericardium. The latter consists of an outer parietal layer facing the fibrous pericardium, and an inner visceral layer (epicardium) resting next to the heart, and a pericardial cavity between these two layers. Heart: Anatomy does not easily expand; thus, rapid fluid accumulation leads to increased pressure around the heart. The increase in pressure restricts cardiac Cardiac Total Anomalous Pulmonary Venous Return (TAPVR) filling, resulting in decreased cardiac output Cardiac output The volume of blood passing through the heart per unit of time. It is usually expressed as liters (volume) per minute so as not to be confused with stroke volume (volume per beat). Cardiac Mechanics and cardiac Cardiac Total Anomalous Pulmonary Venous Return (TAPVR) tamponade Tamponade Pericardial effusion, usually of rapid onset, exceeding ventricular filling pressures and causing collapse of the heart with a markedly reduced cardiac output. Pericarditis. Signs and symptoms usually occur in the setting of cardiac Cardiac Total Anomalous Pulmonary Venous Return (TAPVR) tamponade Tamponade Pericardial effusion, usually of rapid onset, exceeding ventricular filling pressures and causing collapse of the heart with a markedly reduced cardiac output. Pericarditis and include dyspnea Dyspnea Dyspnea is the subjective sensation of breathing discomfort. Dyspnea is a normal manifestation of heavy physical or psychological exertion, but also may be caused by underlying conditions (both pulmonary and extrapulmonary). Dyspnea, hypotension Hypotension Hypotension is defined as low blood pressure, specifically < 90/60 mm Hg, and is most commonly a physiologic response. Hypotension may be mild, serious, or life threatening, depending on the cause. Hypotension, muffled heart sounds Heart sounds Heart sounds are brief, transient sounds produced by valve opening and closure and by movement of blood in the heart. They are divided into systolic and diastolic sounds. In most cases, only the first (S1) and second (S2) heart sounds are heard. These are high-frequency sounds and arise from aortic and pulmonary valve closure (S1), as well as mitral and tricuspid valve closure (S2). Heart Sounds, jugular venous distension Jugular Venous Distension Cardiovascular Examination, and pulsus paradoxus. The diagnosis of pericardial effusion is confirmed with echocardiography Echocardiography Ultrasonic recording of the size, motion, and composition of the heart and surrounding tissues. The standard approach is transthoracic. Tricuspid Valve Atresia (TVA). Small effusions in stable patients Patients Individuals participating in the health care system for the purpose of receiving therapeutic, diagnostic, or preventive procedures. Clinician–Patient Relationship are treated medically. Larger effusions and cardiac Cardiac Total Anomalous Pulmonary Venous Return (TAPVR) tamponade Tamponade Pericardial effusion, usually of rapid onset, exceeding ventricular filling pressures and causing collapse of the heart with a markedly reduced cardiac output. Pericarditis may require pericardiocentesis Pericardiocentesis Puncture and aspiration of fluid from the pericardium. Cardiac Surgery or pericardiotomy.

Last updated: 11 May, 2022

Editorial responsibility: Stanley Oiseth, Lindsay Jones, Evelin Maza

Epidemiology and Etiology

Definition

Pericardial effusion is the accumulation of fluid in the pericardial space.

Cardiac Cardiac Total Anomalous Pulmonary Venous Return (TAPVR) tamponade Tamponade Pericardial effusion, usually of rapid onset, exceeding ventricular filling pressures and causing collapse of the heart with a markedly reduced cardiac output. Pericarditis is the accumulation of pericardial fluid Pericardial fluid Watery fluid produced in the serous and visceral pericardium surrounding the surface of the heart. Heart: Anatomy sufficient to impair cardiac Cardiac Total Anomalous Pulmonary Venous Return (TAPVR) filling and cause hemodynamic compromise. The rate of fluid accumulation, and not necessarily the amount, is most important.

Epidemiology

Pericardial effusion:

  • The incidence Incidence The number of new cases of a given disease during a given period in a specified population. It also is used for the rate at which new events occur in a defined population. It is differentiated from prevalence, which refers to all cases in the population at a given time. Measures of Disease Frequency is unknown.
  • Has been observed in approximately 3% of autopsy subjects in studies
  • Age:

Cardiac Cardiac Total Anomalous Pulmonary Venous Return (TAPVR) tamponade Tamponade Pericardial effusion, usually of rapid onset, exceeding ventricular filling pressures and causing collapse of the heart with a markedly reduced cardiac output. Pericarditis: 

  • Incidence Incidence The number of new cases of a given disease during a given period in a specified population. It also is used for the rate at which new events occur in a defined population. It is differentiated from prevalence, which refers to all cases in the population at a given time. Measures of Disease Frequency: 2 cases per 10,000 people in the United States
  • Occurs in approximately 2% of penetrating injuries Penetrating injuries Wounds caused by objects penetrating the skin. Genitourinary Trauma
  • More common in boys and men

Etiology

Many conditions are associated with pericardial effusion, including:

  • Infection:
    • Viral (most common):
      • Coxsackievirus Coxsackievirus Coxsackievirus is a member of a family of viruses called Picornaviridae and the genus Enterovirus. Coxsackieviruses are single-stranded, positive-sense RNA viruses, and are divided into coxsackie group A and B viruses. Both groups of viruses cause upper respiratory infections, rashes, aseptic meningitis, or encephalitis. Coxsackievirus group B
      • Influenza Influenza Influenza viruses are members of the Orthomyxoviridae family and the causative organisms of influenza, a highly contagious febrile respiratory disease. There are 3 primary influenza viruses (A, B, and C) and various subtypes, which are classified based on their virulent surface antigens, hemagglutinin (HA) and neuraminidase (NA). Influenza typically presents with a fever, myalgia, headache, and symptoms of an upper respiratory infection. Influenza Viruses/Influenza
      • Echovirus Echovirus Echoviruses are single-stranded positive-sense RNA viruses belonging to the genus Enterovirus. Transmission is most commonly through the fecal-oral route. The majority of patients are asymptomatic. Patients who are symptomatic can exhibit a wide range of illnesses ranging from nonspecific URIs and exanthems to severe and life-threatening illnesses. Echovirus
      • HIV HIV Anti-HIV Drugs
      • EBV EBV Epstein-barr virus (EBV) is a linear, double-stranded DNA virus belonging to the herpesviridae family. This highly prevalent virus is mostly transmitted through contact with oropharyngeal secretions from an infected individual. The virus can infect epithelial cells and B lymphocytes, where it can undergo lytic replication or latency. Epstein-Barr Virus
      • CMV
      • Parvovirus B19 Parvovirus B19 Primate erythroparvovirus 1 (generally referred to as parvovirus B19, B19 virus, or sometimes erythrovirus B19) ranks among the smallest DNA viruses. Parvovirus B19 is of the family Parvoviridae and genus Erythrovirus. In immunocompetent humans, parvovirus B19 classically results in erythema infectiosum (5th disease) or “slapped cheek syndrome.” Parvovirus B19
      • Varicella
    • Bacterial:
      • Staphylococcus Staphylococcus Staphylococcus is a medically important genera of Gram-positive, aerobic cocci. These bacteria form clusters resembling grapes on culture plates. Staphylococci are ubiquitous for humans, and many strains compose the normal skin flora. Staphylococcus aureus
      • Streptococcus Streptococcus Streptococcus is one of the two medically important genera of gram-positive cocci, the other being Staphylococcus. Streptococci are identified as different species on blood agar on the basis of their hemolytic pattern and sensitivity to optochin and bacitracin. There are many pathogenic species of streptococci, including S. pyogenes, S. agalactiae, S. pneumoniae, and the viridans streptococci. Streptococcus
      • Neisseria Neisseria Neisseria is a genus of bacteria commonly present on mucosal surfaces. Several species exist, but only 2 are pathogenic to humans: N. gonorrhoeae and N. meningitidis. Neisseria species are non-motile, gram-negative diplococci most commonly isolated on modified Thayer-Martin (MTM) agar. Neisseria
      • Legionella Legionella Legionella is a facultative intracellular, gram-negative bacilli. Legionella does not grow on common culture media because it requires certain supplementation (cysteine and iron). Legionella pneumophila (L. pneumophila) accounts for the majority of human infections. Legionella/Legionellosis
      • Treponema Treponema Treponema is a gram-negative, microaerophilic spirochete. Owing to its very thin structure, it is not easily seen on Gram stain, but can be visualized using dark-field microscopy. This spirochete contains endoflagella, which allow for a characteristic corkscrew movement. Treponema pallidum
      • Mycobacterium Mycobacterium Mycobacterium is a genus of the family Mycobacteriaceae in the phylum Actinobacteria. Mycobacteria comprise more than 150 species of facultative intracellular bacilli that are mostly obligate aerobes. Mycobacteria are responsible for multiple human infections including serious diseases, such as tuberculosis (M. tuberculosis), leprosy (M. leprae), and M. avium complex infections. Mycobacterium tuberculosis Tuberculosis Tuberculosis (TB) is an infectious disease caused by Mycobacterium tuberculosis complex bacteria. The bacteria usually attack the lungs but can also damage other parts of the body. Approximately 30% of people around the world are infected with this pathogen, with the majority harboring a latent infection. Tuberculosis spreads through the air when a person with active pulmonary infection coughs or sneezes. Tuberculosis
    • Fungal:
      • Candida Candida Candida is a genus of dimorphic, opportunistic fungi. Candida albicans is part of the normal human flora and is the most common cause of candidiasis. The clinical presentation varies and can include localized mucocutaneous infections (e.g., oropharyngeal, esophageal, intertriginous, and vulvovaginal candidiasis) and invasive disease (e.g., candidemia, intraabdominal abscess, pericarditis, and meningitis). Candida/Candidiasis
      • Histoplasmosis Histoplasmosis Histoplasmosis is an infection caused by Histoplasma capsulatum, a dimorphic fungus. Transmission is through inhalation, and exposure to soils containing bird or bat droppings increases the risk of infection. Most infections are asymptomatic; however, immunocompromised individuals generally develop acute pulmonary infection, chronic infection, or even disseminated disease. Histoplasma/Histoplasmosis
      • Coccidioidomycosis Coccidioidomycosis Coccidioidomycosis, commonly known as San Joaquin Valley fever, is a fungal disease caused by Coccidioides immitis or Coccidioides posadasii. When Coccidioides spores are inhaled, they transform into spherules that result in infection. Coccidioidomycosis is also a common cause of community-acquired pneumonia and can cause severe disease in the immunocompromised. Coccidioides/Coccidioidomycosis
  • Malignancy Malignancy Hemothorax:
  • Trauma
  • Post-procedural occurrence:
    • Cardiac surgery Cardiac surgery Cardiac surgery is the surgical management of cardiac abnormalities and of the great vessels of the thorax. In general terms, surgical intervention of the heart is performed to directly restore adequate pump function, correct inherent structural issues, and reestablish proper blood supply via the coronary circulation. Cardiac Surgery (postpericardiotomy syndrome)
    • Radiation Radiation Emission or propagation of acoustic waves (sound), electromagnetic energy waves (such as light; radio waves; gamma rays; or x-rays), or a stream of subatomic particles (such as electrons; neutrons; protons; or alpha particles). Osteosarcoma
  • Autoimmune and connective tissue Connective tissue Connective tissues originate from embryonic mesenchyme and are present throughout the body except inside the brain and spinal cord. The main function of connective tissues is to provide structural support to organs. Connective tissues consist of cells and an extracellular matrix. Connective Tissue: Histology disease:
    • Systemic lupus erythematosus Systemic lupus erythematosus Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) is a chronic autoimmune, inflammatory condition that causes immune-complex deposition in organs, resulting in systemic manifestations. Women, particularly those of African American descent, are more commonly affected. Systemic Lupus Erythematosus
    • Rheumatoid arthritis Rheumatoid arthritis Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is a symmetric, inflammatory polyarthritis and chronic, progressive, autoimmune disorder. Presentation occurs most commonly in middle-aged women with joint swelling, pain, and morning stiffness (often in the hands). Rheumatoid Arthritis
    • Ankylosing spondylitis Ankylosing spondylitis Ankylosing spondylitis (also known as Bechterew’s disease or Marie-Strümpell disease) is a seronegative spondyloarthropathy characterized by chronic and indolent inflammation of the axial skeleton. Severe disease can lead to fusion and rigidity of the spine. Ankylosing Spondylitis
    • Scleroderma Scleroderma Scleroderma (systemic sclerosis) is an autoimmune condition characterized by diffuse collagen deposition and fibrosis. The clinical presentation varies from limited skin involvement to diffuse involvement of internal organs. Scleroderma
    • Sarcoidosis Sarcoidosis Sarcoidosis is a multisystem inflammatory disease that causes noncaseating granulomas. The exact etiology is unknown. Sarcoidosis usually affects the lungs and thoracic lymph nodes, but it can also affect almost every system in the body, including the skin, heart, and eyes, most commonly. Sarcoidosis
    • Sjögren syndrome Sjögren Syndrome Rheumatoid Arthritis
    • Vasculitis Vasculitis Inflammation of any one of the blood vessels, including the arteries; veins; and rest of the vasculature system in the body. Systemic Lupus Erythematosus
  • Other medical conditions:
    • Post- myocardial infarction Myocardial infarction MI is ischemia and death of an area of myocardial tissue due to insufficient blood flow and oxygenation, usually from thrombus formation on a ruptured atherosclerotic plaque in the epicardial arteries. Clinical presentation is most commonly with chest pain, but women and patients with diabetes may have atypical symptoms. Myocardial Infarction ( Dressler syndrome Dressler syndrome Myocardial Infarction)
    • Heart failure Heart Failure A heterogeneous condition in which the heart is unable to pump out sufficient blood to meet the metabolic need of the body. Heart failure can be caused by structural defects, functional abnormalities (ventricular dysfunction), or a sudden overload beyond its capacity. Chronic heart failure is more common than acute heart failure which results from sudden insult to cardiac function, such as myocardial infarction. Total Anomalous Pulmonary Venous Return (TAPVR)
    • Aortic dissection Aortic dissection Aortic dissection occurs due to shearing stress from pulsatile pressure causing a tear in the tunica intima of the aortic wall. This tear allows blood to flow into the media, creating a “false lumen.” Aortic dissection is most commonly caused by uncontrolled hypertension. Aortic Dissection (type A)
    • Uremia Uremia A clinical syndrome associated with the retention of renal waste products or uremic toxins in the blood. It is usually the result of renal insufficiency. Most uremic toxins are end products of protein or nitrogen catabolism, such as urea or creatinine. Severe uremia can lead to multiple organ dysfunctions with a constellation of symptoms. Acute Kidney Injury (chronic renal failure Renal failure Conditions in which the kidneys perform below the normal level in the ability to remove wastes, concentrate urine, and maintain electrolyte balance; blood pressure; and calcium metabolism. Renal insufficiency can be classified by the degree of kidney damage (as measured by the level of proteinuria) and reduction in glomerular filtration rate. Crush Syndrome)
    • Myxedema Myxedema A condition characterized by a dry, waxy type of swelling (edema) with abnormal deposits of mucopolysaccharides in the skin and other tissues. It is caused by a deficiency of thyroid hormones. The skin becomes puffy around the eyes and on the cheeks. The face is dull and expressionless with thickened nose and lips. Edema
    • Amyloidosis Amyloidosis Amyloidosis is a disease caused by abnormal extracellular tissue deposition of fibrils composed of various misfolded low-molecular-weight protein subunits. These proteins are frequently byproducts of other pathological processes (e.g., multiple myeloma). Amyloidosis
  • Can be induced by drugs:
    • Procainamide Procainamide A class ia antiarrhythmic drug that is structurally-related to procaine. Class 1 Antiarrhythmic Drugs (Sodium Channel Blockers)
    • Hydralazine Hydralazine A direct-acting vasodilator that is used as an antihypertensive agent. Heart Failure and Angina Medication
    • Isoniazid Isoniazid Antibacterial agent used primarily as a tuberculostatic. It remains the treatment of choice for tuberculosis. Antimycobacterial Drugs
    • Minoxidil
    • Phenytoin Phenytoin An anticonvulsant that is used to treat a wide variety of seizures. The mechanism of therapeutic action is not clear, although several cellular actions have been described including effects on ion channels, active transport, and general membrane stabilization. Phenytoin has been proposed for several other therapeutic uses, but its use has been limited by its many adverse effects and interactions with other drugs. First-Generation Anticonvulsant Drugs
    • Anticoagulants Anticoagulants Anticoagulants are drugs that retard or interrupt the coagulation cascade. The primary classes of available anticoagulants include heparins, vitamin K-dependent antagonists (e.g., warfarin), direct thrombin inhibitors, and factor Xa inhibitors. Anticoagulants
  • Idiopathic Idiopathic Dermatomyositis

Pathophysiology

Normal physiology

  • The pericardial space normally contains a small volume of serous fluid. 
  • Under normal circumstances, the pericardial fluid Pericardial fluid Watery fluid produced in the serous and visceral pericardium surrounding the surface of the heart. Heart: Anatomy:
    • Cushions the heart
    • Provides a low-friction environment
    • Allows the heart to move easily

Pericardial effusion and cardiac Cardiac Total Anomalous Pulmonary Venous Return (TAPVR) tamponade Tamponade Pericardial effusion, usually of rapid onset, exceeding ventricular filling pressures and causing collapse of the heart with a markedly reduced cardiac output. Pericarditis

  • The pericardium Pericardium A conical fibroserous sac surrounding the heart and the roots of the great vessels (aorta; venae cavae; pulmonary artery). Pericardium consists of two sacs: the outer fibrous pericardium and the inner serous pericardium. The latter consists of an outer parietal layer facing the fibrous pericardium, and an inner visceral layer (epicardium) resting next to the heart, and a pericardial cavity between these two layers. Heart: Anatomy has limited elasticity Elasticity Resistance and recovery from distortion of shape. Skeletal Muscle Contraction.
  • Accumulation of pericardial fluid Pericardial fluid Watery fluid produced in the serous and visceral pericardium surrounding the surface of the heart. Heart: Anatomy → ↑ pressure in the pericardial sac
  • As pericardial effusion continues to increase → ↑ compression Compression Blunt Chest Trauma of the heart:
    • ↓ Diastolic filling → venous congestion
    • Stroke volume Stroke volume The amount of blood pumped out of the heart per beat, not to be confused with cardiac output (volume/time). It is calculated as the difference between the end-diastolic volume and the end-systolic volume. Cardiac Cycle
    • Cardiac output Cardiac output The volume of blood passing through the heart per unit of time. It is usually expressed as liters (volume) per minute so as not to be confused with stroke volume (volume per beat). Cardiac Mechanics hypotension Hypotension Hypotension is defined as low blood pressure, specifically < 90/60 mm Hg, and is most commonly a physiologic response. Hypotension may be mild, serious, or life threatening, depending on the cause. Hypotension and obstructive (cardiogenic) shock Shock Shock is a life-threatening condition associated with impaired circulation that results in tissue hypoxia. The different types of shock are based on the underlying cause: distributive (↑ cardiac output (CO), ↓ systemic vascular resistance (SVR)), cardiogenic (↓ CO, ↑ SVR), hypovolemic (↓ CO, ↑ SVR), obstructive (↓ CO), and mixed. Types of Shock
    • ↑ HR to maintain cardiac output Cardiac output The volume of blood passing through the heart per unit of time. It is usually expressed as liters (volume) per minute so as not to be confused with stroke volume (volume per beat). Cardiac Mechanics as a compensatory mechanism
  • The rate of fluid accumulation is important:
    • If fluid were to fill the pericardial space rapidly (e.g., chest trauma), as little as 150 mL could lead to tamponade Tamponade Pericardial effusion, usually of rapid onset, exceeding ventricular filling pressures and causing collapse of the heart with a markedly reduced cardiac output. Pericarditis
    • If fluid accumulates slowly, the pericardial sac can stretch to accommodate approximately 2 L of fluid.

Clinical Presentation

Symptoms

Without cardiac Cardiac Total Anomalous Pulmonary Venous Return (TAPVR) tamponade Tamponade Pericardial effusion, usually of rapid onset, exceeding ventricular filling pressures and causing collapse of the heart with a markedly reduced cardiac output. Pericarditis:

  • Usually no symptoms specific to effusion
  • Symptoms may be related to the underlying condition (e.g., infection, uremia Uremia A clinical syndrome associated with the retention of renal waste products or uremic toxins in the blood. It is usually the result of renal insufficiency. Most uremic toxins are end products of protein or nitrogen catabolism, such as urea or creatinine. Severe uremia can lead to multiple organ dysfunctions with a constellation of symptoms. Acute Kidney Injury, autoimmune disease).

Cardiac Cardiac Total Anomalous Pulmonary Venous Return (TAPVR) tamponade Tamponade Pericardial effusion, usually of rapid onset, exceeding ventricular filling pressures and causing collapse of the heart with a markedly reduced cardiac output. Pericarditis:

  • Dyspnea Dyspnea Dyspnea is the subjective sensation of breathing discomfort. Dyspnea is a normal manifestation of heavy physical or psychological exertion, but also may be caused by underlying conditions (both pulmonary and extrapulmonary). Dyspnea
  • Chest pain Chest Pain Chest pain is one of the most common and challenging complaints that may present in an inpatient and outpatient setting. The differential diagnosis of chest pain is large and includes cardiac, gastrointestinal, pulmonary, musculoskeletal, and psychiatric etiologies. Chest Pain ( pericarditis Pericarditis Pericarditis is an inflammation of the pericardium, often with fluid accumulation. It can be caused by infection (often viral), myocardial infarction, drugs, malignancies, metabolic disorders, autoimmune disorders, or trauma. Acute, subacute, and chronic forms exist. Pericarditis):
    • Worse when lying flat
    • Improves when sitting up
  • Lightheadedness Lightheadedness Hypotension
  • Syncope Syncope Syncope is a short-term loss of consciousness and loss of postural stability followed by spontaneous return of consciousness to the previous neurologic baseline without the need for resuscitation. The condition is caused by transient interruption of cerebral blood flow that may be benign or related to a underlying life-threatening condition. Syncope
  • Palpitations Palpitations Ebstein’s Anomaly
  • Hoarseness Hoarseness An unnaturally deep or rough quality of voice. Parapharyngeal Abscess
  • Anxiety Anxiety Feelings or emotions of dread, apprehension, and impending disaster but not disabling as with anxiety disorders. Generalized Anxiety Disorder or confusion
  • Fatigue Fatigue The state of weariness following a period of exertion, mental or physical, characterized by a decreased capacity for work and reduced efficiency to respond to stimuli. Fibromyalgia
  • Hiccups

Physical exam

The following may be seen with large pericardial effusions and cardiac Cardiac Total Anomalous Pulmonary Venous Return (TAPVR) tamponade Tamponade Pericardial effusion, usually of rapid onset, exceeding ventricular filling pressures and causing collapse of the heart with a markedly reduced cardiac output. Pericarditis:

Vital signs:

  • Hypotension Hypotension Hypotension is defined as low blood pressure, specifically < 90/60 mm Hg, and is most commonly a physiologic response. Hypotension may be mild, serious, or life threatening, depending on the cause. Hypotension
  • Tachycardia Tachycardia Abnormally rapid heartbeat, usually with a heart rate above 100 beats per minute for adults. Tachycardia accompanied by disturbance in the cardiac depolarization (cardiac arrhythmia) is called tachyarrhythmia. Sepsis in Children

Cardiovascular:

  • Pericardial friction rub Pericardial friction rub A rasping, scratching, or grating sound with up to 3 components per cardiac cycle and best heard during expiration with the patient leaning forward. Pericarditis ( pericarditis Pericarditis Pericarditis is an inflammation of the pericardium, often with fluid accumulation. It can be caused by infection (often viral), myocardial infarction, drugs, malignancies, metabolic disorders, autoimmune disorders, or trauma. Acute, subacute, and chronic forms exist. Pericarditis)
  • Muffled heart sounds Heart sounds Heart sounds are brief, transient sounds produced by valve opening and closure and by movement of blood in the heart. They are divided into systolic and diastolic sounds. In most cases, only the first (S1) and second (S2) heart sounds are heard. These are high-frequency sounds and arise from aortic and pulmonary valve closure (S1), as well as mitral and tricuspid valve closure (S2). Heart Sounds
  • Jugular venous distension Jugular Venous Distension Cardiovascular Examination
  • Hepatojugular reflux
  • Weakened peripheral pulses
  • Pulsus paradoxus: a drop in systolic blood pressure of > 10 mm MM Multiple myeloma (MM) is a malignant condition of plasma cells (activated B lymphocytes) primarily seen in the elderly. Monoclonal proliferation of plasma cells results in cytokine-driven osteoclastic activity and excessive secretion of IgG antibodies. Multiple Myeloma Hg during inspiration Inspiration Ventilation: Mechanics of Breathing

Respiratory:

  • Ewart’s sign: 
    • Dullness to percussion Percussion Act of striking a part with short, sharp blows as an aid in diagnosing the condition beneath the sound obtained. Pulmonary Examination beneath the angle of the left scapula
    • Tubular breath sounds
    • Egophony
  • Diminished breath sounds (if pleural effusion Pleural Effusion Pleural effusion refers to the accumulation of fluid between the layers of the parietal and visceral pleura. Common causes of this condition include infection, malignancy, autoimmune disorders, or volume overload. Clinical manifestations include chest pain, cough, and dyspnea. Pleural Effusion is present)

Peripheral:

  • Edema Edema Edema is a condition in which excess serous fluid accumulates in the body cavity or interstitial space of connective tissues. Edema is a symptom observed in several medical conditions. It can be categorized into 2 types, namely, peripheral (in the extremities) and internal (in an organ or body cavity). Edema
  • Cyanosis Cyanosis A bluish or purplish discoloration of the skin and mucous membranes due to an increase in the amount of deoxygenated hemoglobin in the blood or a structural defect in the hemoglobin molecule. Pulmonary Examination

Beck’s triad

The triad describes the classic findings in cardiac Cardiac Total Anomalous Pulmonary Venous Return (TAPVR) tamponade Tamponade Pericardial effusion, usually of rapid onset, exceeding ventricular filling pressures and causing collapse of the heart with a markedly reduced cardiac output. Pericarditis:

  • Hypotension Hypotension Hypotension is defined as low blood pressure, specifically < 90/60 mm Hg, and is most commonly a physiologic response. Hypotension may be mild, serious, or life threatening, depending on the cause. Hypotension
  • Jugular venous distension Jugular Venous Distension Cardiovascular Examination
  • Muffled heart sounds Heart sounds Heart sounds are brief, transient sounds produced by valve opening and closure and by movement of blood in the heart. They are divided into systolic and diastolic sounds. In most cases, only the first (S1) and second (S2) heart sounds are heard. These are high-frequency sounds and arise from aortic and pulmonary valve closure (S1), as well as mitral and tricuspid valve closure (S2). Heart Sounds on auscultation 

Diagnosis

Imaging

ECG ECG An electrocardiogram (ECG) is a graphic representation of the electrical activity of the heart plotted against time. Adhesive electrodes are affixed to the skin surface allowing measurement of cardiac impulses from many angles. The ECG provides 3-dimensional information about the conduction system of the heart, the myocardium, and other cardiac structures. Electrocardiogram (ECG):

  • Sinus tachycardia Tachycardia Abnormally rapid heartbeat, usually with a heart rate above 100 beats per minute for adults. Tachycardia accompanied by disturbance in the cardiac depolarization (cardiac arrhythmia) is called tachyarrhythmia. Sepsis in Children
  • Low voltage of QRS complexes
  • Diffuse ST elevation with PR depression ( pericarditis Pericarditis Pericarditis is an inflammation of the pericardium, often with fluid accumulation. It can be caused by infection (often viral), myocardial infarction, drugs, malignancies, metabolic disorders, autoimmune disorders, or trauma. Acute, subacute, and chronic forms exist. Pericarditis)
  • Electrical alternans: 
    • Consecutive QRS complexes that alternate in height
    • A motion artifact due to the pendular swinging of the heart within the pericardial space
    • Seen in large pericardial effusion or cardiac Cardiac Total Anomalous Pulmonary Venous Return (TAPVR) tamponade Tamponade Pericardial effusion, usually of rapid onset, exceeding ventricular filling pressures and causing collapse of the heart with a markedly reduced cardiac output. Pericarditis
Electrical alternans pericardial effusion

Electrical alternans on an ECG ECG An electrocardiogram (ECG) is a graphic representation of the electrical activity of the heart plotted against time. Adhesive electrodes are affixed to the skin surface allowing measurement of cardiac impulses from many angles. The ECG provides 3-dimensional information about the conduction system of the heart, the myocardium, and other cardiac structures. Electrocardiogram (ECG) in a patient with a large pericardial effusion:
The arrows point to the alternating amplitude of the QRS complex QRS complex Electrocardiogram (ECG).

Image: “Electrical alternans” by Eric Williams Medical Sciences Complex, The University of the West Indies, Champs Fleurs, Trinidad and Tobago. License: CC BY 4.0

Chest X-ray X-ray Penetrating electromagnetic radiation emitted when the inner orbital electrons of an atom are excited and release radiant energy. X-ray wavelengths range from 1 pm to 10 nm. Hard x-rays are the higher energy, shorter wavelength x-rays. Soft x-rays or grenz rays are less energetic and longer in wavelength. The short wavelength end of the x-ray spectrum overlaps the gamma rays wavelength range. The distinction between gamma rays and x-rays is based on their radiation source. Pulmonary Function Tests

Cardiomegaly due to pericardial effusion before and after drainage

Cardiomegaly Cardiomegaly Enlargement of the heart, usually indicated by a cardiothoracic ratio above 0. 50. Heart enlargement may involve the right, the left, or both heart ventricles or heart atria. Cardiomegaly is a nonspecific symptom seen in patients with chronic systolic heart failure (heart failure) or several forms of cardiomyopathies. Ebstein’s Anomaly due to pericardial effusion before and after drainage:
(a) Chest X-ray X-ray Penetrating electromagnetic radiation emitted when the inner orbital electrons of an atom are excited and release radiant energy. X-ray wavelengths range from 1 pm to 10 nm. Hard x-rays are the higher energy, shorter wavelength x-rays. Soft x-rays or grenz rays are less energetic and longer in wavelength. The short wavelength end of the x-ray spectrum overlaps the gamma rays wavelength range. The distinction between gamma rays and x-rays is based on their radiation source. Pulmonary Function Tests demonstrating cardiomegaly Cardiomegaly Enlargement of the heart, usually indicated by a cardiothoracic ratio above 0. 50. Heart enlargement may involve the right, the left, or both heart ventricles or heart atria. Cardiomegaly is a nonspecific symptom seen in patients with chronic systolic heart failure (heart failure) or several forms of cardiomyopathies. Ebstein’s Anomaly due to the accumulation of pericardial effusion
(b) There is resolution of this cardiomegaly Cardiomegaly Enlargement of the heart, usually indicated by a cardiothoracic ratio above 0. 50. Heart enlargement may involve the right, the left, or both heart ventricles or heart atria. Cardiomegaly is a nonspecific symptom seen in patients with chronic systolic heart failure (heart failure) or several forms of cardiomyopathies. Ebstein’s Anomaly after drainage of the fluid.

Image: “ CXR CXR X-ray visualization of the chest and organs of the thoracic cavity. It is not restricted to visualization of the lungs. Pulmonary Function Tests” by Division of Cardiology, Saint Luke’s University Health Network, Bethlehem, PA 18015, USA. License: CC BY 3.0

Echocardiogram Echocardiogram Transposition of the Great Vessels:

  • Diagnostic test of choice 
  • High sensitivity and specificity Sensitivity and Specificity Binary classification measures to assess test results. Sensitivity or recall rate is the proportion of true positives. Specificity is the probability of correctly determining the absence of a condition. Epidemiological Values of Diagnostic Tests
  • Provides hemodynamic information
  • Pericardial effusion appears as an echolucent space in the pericardial sac.
  • Cardiac Cardiac Total Anomalous Pulmonary Venous Return (TAPVR) tamponade Tamponade Pericardial effusion, usually of rapid onset, exceeding ventricular filling pressures and causing collapse of the heart with a markedly reduced cardiac output. Pericarditis findings:
    • Right atrial free-wall collapse during systole Systole Period of contraction of the heart, especially of the heart ventricles. Cardiac Cycle
    • Right ventricle collapse during diastole Diastole Post-systolic relaxation of the heart, especially the heart ventricles. Cardiac Cycle
    • Septal bowing
    • Inferior vena cava Inferior vena cava The venous trunk which receives blood from the lower extremities and from the pelvic and abdominal organs. Mediastinum and Great Vessels: Anatomy dilation without respiratory variation
Echocardiogram showing pericardial effusion

Transthoracic echocardiography Echocardiography Ultrasonic recording of the size, motion, and composition of the heart and surrounding tissues. The standard approach is transthoracic. Tricuspid Valve Atresia (TVA) showing pericardial effusion (echolucent region around the heart)

Image: “Transthoracic echocardiography Echocardiography Ultrasonic recording of the size, motion, and composition of the heart and surrounding tissues. The standard approach is transthoracic. Tricuspid Valve Atresia (TVA)” by Department of Internal Medicine, The University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, NM 87106, USA. License: CC BY 4.0

CT and MRI:

  • Not the diagnostic modalities of choice
  • May be used if echo imaging is not diagnostic
  • Can evaluate for pericardial pathology
  • May be more sensitive for identifying loculated effusions
Ct pulmonary embolus showing pericardial effusion

A CT scan demonstrating pericardial effusion, measuring 19.27 mm MM Multiple myeloma (MM) is a malignant condition of plasma cells (activated B lymphocytes) primarily seen in the elderly. Monoclonal proliferation of plasma cells results in cytokine-driven osteoclastic activity and excessive secretion of IgG antibodies. Multiple Myeloma

Image: “CT pulmonary embolus” by Stanford Hospital and Clinics, Stanford, California. License: CC BY 2.0

Pericardial fluid Pericardial fluid Watery fluid produced in the serous and visceral pericardium surrounding the surface of the heart. Heart: Anatomy analysis and pericardial biopsy Biopsy Removal and pathologic examination of specimens from the living body. Ewing Sarcoma

Pericardial fluid Pericardial fluid Watery fluid produced in the serous and visceral pericardium surrounding the surface of the heart. Heart: Anatomy analysis and pericardial biopsy Biopsy Removal and pathologic examination of specimens from the living body. Ewing Sarcoma may be performed to determine the cause of the pericardial effusion. The following tests may be conducted on the pericardial fluid Pericardial fluid Watery fluid produced in the serous and visceral pericardium surrounding the surface of the heart. Heart: Anatomy:

  • Gram stain Gram stain Klebsiella and cultures Cultures Klebsiella (including fungal)
  • Cell count with differential
  • Cytology
  • Acid-fast bacillus Bacillus Bacillus are aerobic, spore-forming, gram-positive bacilli. Two pathogenic species are Bacillus anthracis (B. anthracis) and B. cereus. Bacillus stain and culture
  • Viral PCR PCR Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) is a technique that amplifies DNA fragments exponentially for analysis. The process is highly specific, allowing for the targeting of specific genomic sequences, even with minuscule sample amounts. The PCR cycles multiple times through 3 phases: denaturation of the template DNA, annealing of a specific primer to the individual DNA strands, and synthesis/elongation of new DNA molecules. Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) panel

Laboratory evaluation

The following tests may be performed to ascertain the etiology of a pericardial effusion:

  • CBC with differential
  • BUN and creatinine
  • Erythrocyte sedimentation rate Erythrocyte Sedimentation Rate Soft Tissue Abscess and CRP
  • Troponin
  • Thyroid-stimulating hormone Thyroid-stimulating hormone A glycoprotein hormone secreted by the adenohypophysis. Thyrotropin stimulates thyroid gland by increasing the iodide transport, synthesis and release of thyroid hormones (thyroxine and triiodothyronine). Thyroid Hormones (TSH)
  • Rheumatoid factor Rheumatoid factor Antibodies found in adult rheumatoid arthritis patients that are directed against gamma-chain immunoglobulins. Autoimmune Hepatitis levels
  • ANA
  • Complement levels
  • Quantiferon- TB TB Tuberculosis (TB) is an infectious disease caused by Mycobacterium tuberculosis complex bacteria. The bacteria usually attack the lungs but can also damage other parts of the body. Approximately 30% of people around the world are infected with this pathogen, with the majority harboring a latent infection. Tuberculosis spreads through the air when a person with active pulmonary infection coughs or sneezes. Tuberculosis assay
  • HIV HIV Anti-HIV Drugs serology Serology The study of serum, especially of antigen-antibody reactions in vitro. Yellow Fever Virus

Management

Management of pericardial effusion

  • Depends on the patient’s stability and the underlying cause of effusion
  • Identify and treat the underlying conditions.
  • Medical therapy for inflammatory effusions or associated pericarditis Pericarditis Pericarditis is an inflammation of the pericardium, often with fluid accumulation. It can be caused by infection (often viral), myocardial infarction, drugs, malignancies, metabolic disorders, autoimmune disorders, or trauma. Acute, subacute, and chronic forms exist. Pericarditis:
  • Small effusions in a stable patient are usually self resolving → no need for any intervention
  • Pericardial drainage can be considered in:
    • Large symptomatic effusions
    • Uncertain etiology

Management of cardiac Cardiac Total Anomalous Pulmonary Venous Return (TAPVR) tamponade Tamponade Pericardial effusion, usually of rapid onset, exceeding ventricular filling pressures and causing collapse of the heart with a markedly reduced cardiac output. Pericarditis

General considerations:

Pericardiocentesis Pericardiocentesis Puncture and aspiration of fluid from the pericardium. Cardiac Surgery:

  • A needle is inserted into the pericardial space.
  • Fluid is removed to relieve pressure on the heart.
  • A catheter can be placed for periodic drainage.
Subxiphoid approach for pericardiocentesis

Subxiphoid approach for pericardiocentesis Pericardiocentesis Puncture and aspiration of fluid from the pericardium. Cardiac Surgery:
This approach allows the drainage of pericardial fluid Pericardial fluid Watery fluid produced in the serous and visceral pericardium surrounding the surface of the heart. Heart: Anatomy.

Image by Lecturio.

Surgical management:

  • Allows for pericardial biopsy Biopsy Removal and pathologic examination of specimens from the living body. Ewing Sarcoma
  • Preferred in traumatic pericardial effusions
  • Options:
    • Pericardiotomy
    • Pericardial window Pericardial window Surgical construction of an opening or window in the pericardium. It is often called subxiphoid pericardial window technique. Cardiac Surgery

Differential Diagnosis

  • Pericarditis Pericarditis Pericarditis is an inflammation of the pericardium, often with fluid accumulation. It can be caused by infection (often viral), myocardial infarction, drugs, malignancies, metabolic disorders, autoimmune disorders, or trauma. Acute, subacute, and chronic forms exist. Pericarditis: an inflammation Inflammation Inflammation is a complex set of responses to infection and injury involving leukocytes as the principal cellular mediators in the body’s defense against pathogenic organisms. Inflammation is also seen as a response to tissue injury in the process of wound healing. The 5 cardinal signs of inflammation are pain, heat, redness, swelling, and loss of function. Inflammation of the pericardium Pericardium A conical fibroserous sac surrounding the heart and the roots of the great vessels (aorta; venae cavae; pulmonary artery). Pericardium consists of two sacs: the outer fibrous pericardium and the inner serous pericardium. The latter consists of an outer parietal layer facing the fibrous pericardium, and an inner visceral layer (epicardium) resting next to the heart, and a pericardial cavity between these two layers. Heart: Anatomy resulting from infection, autoimmune disease, radiation Radiation Emission or propagation of acoustic waves (sound), electromagnetic energy waves (such as light; radio waves; gamma rays; or x-rays), or a stream of subatomic particles (such as electrons; neutrons; protons; or alpha particles). Osteosarcoma, surgery, myocardial infarction Myocardial infarction MI is ischemia and death of an area of myocardial tissue due to insufficient blood flow and oxygenation, usually from thrombus formation on a ruptured atherosclerotic plaque in the epicardial arteries. Clinical presentation is most commonly with chest pain, but women and patients with diabetes may have atypical symptoms. Myocardial Infarction, or cardiac surgery Cardiac surgery Cardiac surgery is the surgical management of cardiac abnormalities and of the great vessels of the thorax. In general terms, surgical intervention of the heart is performed to directly restore adequate pump function, correct inherent structural issues, and reestablish proper blood supply via the coronary circulation. Cardiac Surgery. Patients Patients Individuals participating in the health care system for the purpose of receiving therapeutic, diagnostic, or preventive procedures. Clinician–Patient Relationship may have fever Fever Fever is defined as a measured body temperature of at least 38°C (100.4°F). Fever is caused by circulating endogenous and/or exogenous pyrogens that increase levels of prostaglandin E2 in the hypothalamus. Fever is commonly associated with chills, rigors, sweating, and flushing of the skin. Fever, pleuritic chest pain Chest Pain Chest pain is one of the most common and challenging complaints that may present in an inpatient and outpatient setting. The differential diagnosis of chest pain is large and includes cardiac, gastrointestinal, pulmonary, musculoskeletal, and psychiatric etiologies. Chest Pain, and a pericardial rub on cardiac Cardiac Total Anomalous Pulmonary Venous Return (TAPVR) auscultation. The diagnosis is confirmed based on diffuse ST elevation on ECG ECG An electrocardiogram (ECG) is a graphic representation of the electrical activity of the heart plotted against time. Adhesive electrodes are affixed to the skin surface allowing measurement of cardiac impulses from many angles. The ECG provides 3-dimensional information about the conduction system of the heart, the myocardium, and other cardiac structures. Electrocardiogram (ECG), and findings of pericardial thickening and effusion on echocardiography Echocardiography Ultrasonic recording of the size, motion, and composition of the heart and surrounding tissues. The standard approach is transthoracic. Tricuspid Valve Atresia (TVA). Management may include NSAIDs NSAIDS Primary vs Secondary Headaches, colchicine Colchicine A major alkaloid from colchicum autumnale l. And found also in other colchicum species. Its primary therapeutic use is in the treatment of gout. Gout Drugs, and steroids Steroids A group of polycyclic compounds closely related biochemically to terpenes. They include cholesterol, numerous hormones, precursors of certain vitamins, bile acids, alcohols (sterols), and certain natural drugs and poisons. Steroids have a common nucleus, a fused, reduced 17-carbon atom ring system, cyclopentanoperhydrophenanthrene. Most steroids also have two methyl groups and an aliphatic side-chain attached to the nucleus. Benign Liver Tumors.
  • Myocarditis Myocarditis Myocarditis is an inflammatory disease of the myocardium, which may occur alone or in association with a systemic process. There are numerous etiologies of myocarditis, but all lead to inflammation and myocyte injury, most often leading to signs and symptoms of heart failure. Myocarditis: an inflammatory disease of the myocardium Myocardium The muscle tissue of the heart. It is composed of striated, involuntary muscle cells connected to form the contractile pump to generate blood flow. Heart: Anatomy. Myocarditis Myocarditis Myocarditis is an inflammatory disease of the myocardium, which may occur alone or in association with a systemic process. There are numerous etiologies of myocarditis, but all lead to inflammation and myocyte injury, most often leading to signs and symptoms of heart failure. Myocarditis most often leads to signs and symptoms of heart failure Heart Failure A heterogeneous condition in which the heart is unable to pump out sufficient blood to meet the metabolic need of the body. Heart failure can be caused by structural defects, functional abnormalities (ventricular dysfunction), or a sudden overload beyond its capacity. Chronic heart failure is more common than acute heart failure which results from sudden insult to cardiac function, such as myocardial infarction. Total Anomalous Pulmonary Venous Return (TAPVR). The course of myocarditis Myocarditis Myocarditis is an inflammatory disease of the myocardium, which may occur alone or in association with a systemic process. There are numerous etiologies of myocarditis, but all lead to inflammation and myocyte injury, most often leading to signs and symptoms of heart failure. Myocarditis may vary based on the etiology and the timeline of symptom progression. The diagnosis is supported by clinical findings, laboratory evaluation, and cardiac Cardiac Total Anomalous Pulmonary Venous Return (TAPVR) imaging. A definitive diagnosis using endomyocardial biopsy Biopsy Removal and pathologic examination of specimens from the living body. Ewing Sarcoma is rarely required. Management is supportive and aimed at addressing complications.
  • Pulmonary embolism Pulmonary Embolism Pulmonary embolism (PE) is a potentially fatal condition that occurs as a result of intraluminal obstruction of the main pulmonary artery or its branches. The causative factors include thrombi, air, amniotic fluid, and fat. In PE, gas exchange is impaired due to the decreased return of deoxygenated blood to the lungs. Pulmonary Embolism: an obstruction of the pulmonary arteries Arteries Arteries are tubular collections of cells that transport oxygenated blood and nutrients from the heart to the tissues of the body. The blood passes through the arteries in order of decreasing luminal diameter, starting in the largest artery (the aorta) and ending in the small arterioles. Arteries are classified into 3 types: large elastic arteries, medium muscular arteries, and small arteries and arterioles. Arteries: Histology, most often due to thrombus migration from the deep venous system. Signs and symptoms include pleuritic chest pain Chest Pain Chest pain is one of the most common and challenging complaints that may present in an inpatient and outpatient setting. The differential diagnosis of chest pain is large and includes cardiac, gastrointestinal, pulmonary, musculoskeletal, and psychiatric etiologies. Chest Pain, dyspnea Dyspnea Dyspnea is the subjective sensation of breathing discomfort. Dyspnea is a normal manifestation of heavy physical or psychological exertion, but also may be caused by underlying conditions (both pulmonary and extrapulmonary). Dyspnea, tachypnea Tachypnea Increased respiratory rate. Pulmonary Examination, and tachycardia Tachycardia Abnormally rapid heartbeat, usually with a heart rate above 100 beats per minute for adults. Tachycardia accompanied by disturbance in the cardiac depolarization (cardiac arrhythmia) is called tachyarrhythmia. Sepsis in Children. Severe cases can result in hemodynamic instability or cardiopulmonary arrest Cardiopulmonary arrest Cardiac arrest is the sudden, complete cessation of cardiac output with hemodynamic collapse. Patients present as pulseless, unresponsive, and apneic. Rhythms associated with cardiac arrest are ventricular fibrillation/tachycardia, asystole, or pulseless electrical activity. Cardiac Arrest. A chest CT with angiography Angiography Radiography of blood vessels after injection of a contrast medium. Cardiac Surgery is the primary method of diagnosis. Management includes oxygenation, anticoagulation Anticoagulation Pulmonary Hypertension Drugs, and thrombolytic therapy for unstable patients Patients Individuals participating in the health care system for the purpose of receiving therapeutic, diagnostic, or preventive procedures. Clinician–Patient Relationship.
  • Pneumothorax Pneumothorax A pneumothorax is a life-threatening condition in which air collects in the pleural space, causing partial or full collapse of the lung. A pneumothorax can be traumatic or spontaneous. Patients present with a sudden onset of sharp chest pain, dyspnea, and diminished breath sounds on exam. Pneumothorax: a life-threatening condition in which air collects in the pleural space Pleural space The thin serous membrane enveloping the lungs (lung) and lining the thoracic cavity. Pleura consist of two layers, the inner visceral pleura lying next to the pulmonary parenchyma and the outer parietal pleura. Between the two layers is the pleural cavity which contains a thin film of liquid. Pleuritis, causing a partial or complete collapse of the lung. A pneumothorax Pneumothorax A pneumothorax is a life-threatening condition in which air collects in the pleural space, causing partial or full collapse of the lung. A pneumothorax can be traumatic or spontaneous. Patients present with a sudden onset of sharp chest pain, dyspnea, and diminished breath sounds on exam. Pneumothorax can be traumatic or spontaneous. Patients Patients Individuals participating in the health care system for the purpose of receiving therapeutic, diagnostic, or preventive procedures. Clinician–Patient Relationship present with a sudden onset of sharp chest pain Chest Pain Chest pain is one of the most common and challenging complaints that may present in an inpatient and outpatient setting. The differential diagnosis of chest pain is large and includes cardiac, gastrointestinal, pulmonary, musculoskeletal, and psychiatric etiologies. Chest Pain, dyspnea Dyspnea Dyspnea is the subjective sensation of breathing discomfort. Dyspnea is a normal manifestation of heavy physical or psychological exertion, but also may be caused by underlying conditions (both pulmonary and extrapulmonary). Dyspnea, and diminished breath sounds on exam. A large or tension pneumothorax Pneumothorax A pneumothorax is a life-threatening condition in which air collects in the pleural space, causing partial or full collapse of the lung. A pneumothorax can be traumatic or spontaneous. Patients present with a sudden onset of sharp chest pain, dyspnea, and diminished breath sounds on exam. Pneumothorax can result in cardiopulmonary collapse. The diagnosis is made based on imaging findings. Management includes needle decompression Needle Decompression Pneumothorax and placement of a chest tube ( thoracostomy Thoracostomy Surgical procedure involving the creation of an opening (stoma) into the chest cavity for drainage; used in the treatment of pleural effusion; pneumothorax; hemothorax; and empyema. Hemothorax).

References

  1. Hoit, B.D. (2020). Etiology of pericardial disease. In Yeon, S.B. (Ed.), UpToDate. Retrieved April 8, 2021, from https://www.uptodate.com/contents/etiology-of-pericardial-disease
  2. Hoit, B.D. (2020). Diagnosis and treatment of pericardial effusion. In Yeon, S.B. (Ed.), UpToDate. Retrieved April 8, 2021, from https://www.uptodate.com/contents/diagnosis-and-treatment-of-pericardial-effusion
  3. Hoit, B.D. (2019). Cardiac tamponade. In Yeon, S.B. (Ed.), UpToDate. Retrieved April 8, 2021, from https://www.uptodate.com/contents/cardiac-tamponade
  4. Spodick, D.H. (2003). Acute cardiac tamponade. N Engl J Med. 349(7):684–690. https://reference.medscape.com/medline/abstract/12917306
  5. Sagristà-Sauleda, J., Angel, J., Sambola, A., Permanyer-Miralda, G. (2008). Hemodynamic effects of volume expansion in patients with cardiac tamponade. Circulation. 117:1545–1549. https://doi.org/10.1161/CIRCULATIONAHA.107.737841
  6. Strimel, W.J., Ayub, B., Contractor, T. (2018). Pericardial effusion. In O’Brien, T.X. (Ed.), Medscape. Retrieved April 8, 2021, from https://emedicine.medscape.com/article/157325-overview
  7. Yarlagadda, C. (2018). Cardiac tamponade. In O’Brien, T.X. (Ed.), Medscape. Retrieved April 8, 2021, from https://emedicine.medscape.com/article/152083-overview
  8. Weiser, T.G. (2020). Cardiac tamponade. [Online] MSD Manual Professional Version. Retrieved April 8, 2021, from https://www.msdmanuals.com/professional/injuries-poisoning/thoracic-trauma/cardiac-tamponade
  9. Willner, D.A., Goyal, A., Grigorova, Y., Kiel, J. (2020). Pericardial effusion. [Online] StatPearls. Retrieved April 8, 2021, from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK431089/
  10. Stashko, E., Meer, J.M. (2020). Cardiac tamponade. [Online] StatPearls. Retrieved April 8, 2021, from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK431090

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