Which lab tests are performed in the workup of suspected pericardial effusion?

Updated: Nov 28, 2018
  • Author: William J Strimel, DO, FACP; Chief Editor: Terrence X O'Brien, MD, MS, FACC  more...
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The following laboratory studies may be performed in patients with suspected pericardial effusion:

  • Electrolyte levels

  • CBC count with differential

  • Cardiac biomarker levels (eg, troponin, CK-MB, LDH)

  • Tests for other markers of inflammation (eg, ESR, CRP)

  • TSH level

  • Blood cultures

  • RF levels

  • Immunoglobulin complex tests

  • ANA tests

  • Complement levels

  • Pericardial fluid analysis

Early in the course of acute pericarditis, the ECG typically displays diffuse ST elevation in association with PR depression; the ST elevation may be present in all leads except for aVR, although in postmyocardial infarction pericarditis, the changes may be more localized.

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