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Intern Med. 2012;51(22):3197-201. Epub 2012 Nov 15.

Sudden cardiac arrest caused by tuberculous pericarditis with hemorrhagic pericardial effusion.

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Department of Emergency and Critical Care Medicine, The University of Tokyo Hospital, Japan.


As tuberculosis still exists in Japan, tuberculous pericarditis is a major health issue. Tuberculous pericarditis is difficult to diagnose and leads to poor outcomes when left untreated. We herein report the case of a patient who was admitted to the hospital after undergoing resuscitation for cardiopulmonary arrest. Mycobacterium tuberculosis was detected in his hemorrhagic pericardial fluid and tuberculous pericarditis was diagnosed. The administration of antituberculous medication resulted in marked improvements. A diagnosis of tuberculous pericarditis, in addition to other causes such as malignant tumors, should therefore be considered in the differential diagnosis for cases presenting with hemorrhagic pericardial effusion, even in those involving sudden cardiac arrest.

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