Pericarditis and pericardial effusion in patients with acute myocardial infarction

J. E. Madias, R. M. Perdoncin, O. B. Bartoszyk, W. J. Schwartz, J. P. Stathis, E. D. Goren, E. Abovich, A. Stolan, J. Pullano

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Abstract

A consecutive series of 174 patients with acute myocardial infarction (MI) was prospectively monitored for pericardial friction rub to diagnose pericarditis (PER) and had three echocardiograms on days 1, 3 and 10 of hospitalization, to detect a pericardial effusion (PE). The relationship of heparin therapy to PER and PE was also studied. Patients with PER (n=41, 23.6% of total) had a higher rate of anterior MI (65.9vs. 36.8%, p<0.001), heparin therapy (100vs. 84.2%, p<0.001) and PE (34.1vs. 15.0%, p<0.01) than those without PER; also the PE on day 1 was smaller in the patients with than without PER(0.5±1.2 vs. 2.3±2.7mm, p<0.005), but not different on days 3 and 10. Patients with PE (n=34, 19.5% of total) differed from those without PE only in the incidence of PER (41vs. 19%, p<0.01). PE increased between days 1 and 3 (1.5±2.3vs. 3.7±5.3mm, p<0.05), but was not different between days 3 and 10, during which it was 3.8±3.3mm. No higher rate of complications was noted in connection with PER or PE, either in the hospital or for a mean of 20 months after discharge. Heparin therapy in patients with PER and PE did not have an untoward effect. Hence, PER and PE were frequent in patients with MI; their emergence even in patients receiving heparin did not alter the expected clinical outcome, both in the hospital and during a mean 20-month follow-up after discharge.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)270-277
Number of pages8
JournalAmerican Journal of Noninvasive Cardiology
Volume8
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - 1994
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Echocardiography, serial
  • Myocardial infarction
  • Pericardial effusion
  • Pericardial friction rub
  • Pericarditis

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