Tuberculosis of the heart is uncommon. This is not at all strange when one realizes how rarely tuberculosis attacks muscle tissue in general. Tuberculosis of the pericardium is by far a more frequent finding than tuberculosis of the myocardium. Sir William Osler,1 for instance, reported the finding of 275 tuberculous subjects in 1,000 autopsies, of which 7 had tuberculosis of the pericardium. Wells2 found 10 cases of tuberculous pericarditis in 1,048 autopsies. Brooks and Lippincott,3 among 1,000 autopsies, found 23 cases of tuberculous pericarditis. Tuberculosis of the myocardium, however, is a much rarer finding. Nevertheless, a fairly large number of cases of tuberculosis of the myocardium has been reported. This is because many of the cases are secondary to a tuberculous pericarditis. True cases of primary tuberculous myocarditis are quite rare. Virchow once declared that tuberculosis cannot appear in the muscle of the heart. Despite that statement,
CAPPER A, STEWART HL. TUBERCULOSIS OF THE MYOCARDIUM. Am J Dis Child. 1932;44(4):798–805. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1932.01950110100009
Artificial Intelligence Resource Center
Customize your JAMA Network experience by selecting one or more topics from the list below.