What is the role of pericardiocentesis in the workup of 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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Answer

This procedure is used for diagnostic as well as therapeutic purposes. Support for the use of echocardiographic guidance is increasing, unless emergent treatment is required. Indications for pericardiocentesis include impending hemodynamic compromise (ie, pericardial tamponade), suspected infectious or neoplastic etiology, and uncertain etiology.


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