Which factors affect the mortality risk of cardiac tamponade?

Updated: Nov 28, 2018
  • Author: Chakri Yarlagadda, MD, FACC, FSCAI, FASNC, CCDS; Chief Editor: Terrence X O'Brien, MD, MS, FACC  more...
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Answer

The overall mortality risk depends on the speed of diagnosis, the treatment provided, and the underlying cause of the tamponade. Untreated, the condition is rapidly and universally fatal (see the image below). (See Presentation, Workup, Treatment, and Medication.)

This anteroposterior-view chest radiograph shows a This anteroposterior-view chest radiograph shows a massive, bottle-shaped heart and conspicuous absence of pulmonary vascular congestion. Reproduced with permission from Chest, 1996: 109:825.

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