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June 15, 1963

Massive Pericardial Effusion in Subacute Bacterial Endocarditis

Author Affiliations

Brooklyn, N.Y.

Resident physician, Department of Surgery, Brooklyn Hospital (Dr. Tykot), and Assistant Chief Resident, Department of Medicine, Jersey City Medical Center (Dr. Relkin); and formerly, resident physician, Department of Medicine, Brooklyn Hospital (Dr. Relkin).

JAMA. 1963;184(11):898-900. doi:10.1001/jama.1963.73700240023019c

MINOR pericardial effusion has been reported to occur in a small percentage of cases of subacute bacterial endocarditis. However, a review of the literature fails to reveal any case of massive pericardial effusion due to subacute bacterial endocarditis alone. It is the purpose of this paper to present such a case.

Report of a Case  A 39-year-old male was admitted to Brooklyn Hospital on May 10, 1962, because of severe left precordial pain and dyspnea. Eight months prior to admission he noticed a painful "blood blister" in the pad of the right great toe. A similar lesion was subsequently seen in the pad of the right fourth finger 1 month prior to admission, at which time he developed bilateral pedal edema. Two weeks prior to admission he noticed increasing dyspnea on exertion and orthopnea. Night sweats began 4 days prior to admission. There was no history of fever or shaking