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April 1976

Neonatal Pneumopericardium

Am J Dis Child. 1976;130(4):393-396. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1976.02120050051009

• Six cases of pneumopericardium in neonates with hyaline membrane disease were observed during a six-month period. Five babies were receiving positive inspiratory or expiratory pressure or both. All but one had other extra-alveolar air collections. In three cases, sudden decrease in Pao2 was the only recorded sign that led to diagnosis. Pericardial aspiration was performed in four babies; one died and three either survived or died later of unrelated disease. One neonate was not treated and died of other causes. Treatment was delayed in the sixth infant; the pneumopericardium disappeared spontaneously but soon reappeared and contributed to a fatal outcome, although a drainage catheter was inserted. This experience and review of other authors' observations suggest that prompt drainage by catheter and continuous suction is indicated.

(Am J Dis Child 130:393-396, 1976)