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Chirurgia 2014 December;27(6):349-51

Copyright © 2014 EDIZIONI MINERVA MEDICA

language: English

Postpericardiotomy syndrome presenting with “tension hydrothorax”: is a foreign body giant cell reaction to blame?

Carr C. S., Moghul N., Mazhar R., Alkhulaifi A. M.

Department of Cardiothoracic Surgery, Heart Hospital, Doha, Qatar


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Postpericardiotomy syndrome (PPS) is reported to occur to some degree in 10-40% of cases postcardiac surgery and is important as it may prolong hospital stay and cause serious complications. We describe an interesting case where the patient presented one month postoperatively with a “tension hydrothorax” with no pericardial effusion, and then three weeks later with a very large pericardial effusion. Pericardial histology showed a foreign body giant cell reaction. We discuss the possible causes of post-pericardiotomy syndrome and its treatment.

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