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Arjun Kanwal, Dimitrios Avgeropoulos, Jason G. Kaplan, Aditya Saini
(Department of Internal Medicine, MedStar Health Internal Medicine Residency Program, Baltimore, MD, USA)
Am J Case Rep 2020; 21:e921633
Acute bacterial pericarditis is rare, and the incidence numbers have been declining in the modern antibiotic era. Purulent bacterial pericarditis is a fatal disease in which mortality rates can reach 100% if left untreated.
CASE REPORT: We present a case of primary purulent bacterial pericarditis with polymicrobial growth including Micromonas micro, Prevotella intermedia and Fusobacterium species, all of which are anaerobic flora of the oral cavity. Constant re-accumulation of the purulent pericardial effusion led the patient to have recurrent echocardiographic and clinical cardiac tamponade requiring recurrent pericardiocentesis’ and eventually a pericardial window.
CONCLUSIONS: Although rare, bacterial pericarditis has been noted to lead to clinical and echocardiographic tamponade. Early diagnosis and treatment are necessary for improving clinical outcomes. It is important to have a suspicion for purulent pericarditis, due to its high level of mortality, in patients who present with non-specific symptoms and pleuritic chest pain.