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There is an inflammation of the pericardium, which is the fibrous sac that envelops and supports and protects the heart.

This is sometimes caused by bacterial, fungal or viral infections.  Pericarditis is usually caused by a pathogen or substance that starts the inflammatory response

Acute Pericarditis

  • PERICARDIAL FRICTION RUB (WHICH IS A GRATING SOUND HEARD AS THE HEART MOVES)
  • SHARP AND USUAL SUDDEN PAIN THAT USUALLY STARTS OVER THE STERNUM AND RADIATES TO THE NECK.

Chronic Pericarditis

  • PERICARDIAL FRICTION RUB
  • SYMPTOMS SIMILAR TO THOSE OF CHRONIC RIGHT SIDED HEART FAILURE (FLUID RETENTION, ASCITES, HEPATOMEGALY)

Interventions:
– Implement bedrest to the patient
– Give patient antibiotics depending on what organism caused the disease
– The use of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs

Certain complications from pericarditis can include: Heart Failure, Cardiac Tamponade and pericardial effusion.

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