What is the role of antibiotics in the treatment of purulent 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

In patients with purulent pericarditis, urgent pericardial drainage combined with intravenous (IV) antibacterial therapy (eg, vancomycin 1 g bid, ceftriaxone 1-2 g bid, and ciprofloxacin 400 mg daily) is mandatory. Irrigation with urokinase or streptokinase, using large catheters, may liquify the purulent exudate, but open surgical drainage is preferable.


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