What is the accuracy of pericardiocentesis for the diagnosis of acute pericarditis?

Updated: Apr 02, 2019
  • Author: Sean Spangler, MD; Chief Editor: Terrence X O'Brien, MD, MS, FACC  more...
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Answer

In a large study, diagnostic pericardiocentesis led to a diagnosis in only 6% of cases, versus 29% diagnosed with therapeutic pericardiocentesis. As such, pericardiocentesis should not be performed unless tamponade or suspected purulent pericarditis is present.


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