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Br Med J. 1971 Sep 4;3(5774):567-9.

Cardiac beriberi: two modes of presentation.


Two patients suffering from cardiovascular beriberi presented with different clinical manifestations. One had the classical features of a high cardiac output with raised jugular venous pressure and gross oedema. The other was in fulminating heart failure with clinical evidence of a low cardiac output but no peripheral oedema. The latter type of beriberi (shoshin) is rare. Cardiovascular beriberi has a high mortality when untreated. Both patients responded dramatically to thiamine, and this emphasizes the importance of considering thiamine deficiency as a cause of heart failure even when the cardiac output is low.

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