Pericarditis?


This morning the doctor said your husband has pericarditis, but he didn’t explain more.  Briefly, ‘peri’ refers to surrounding, ‘cardio’ refers to the heart, ‘itis’ suggests inflammation. Put together: ‘something that surrounds the heart is inflamed.

In pericarditis, it is the fluid-filled sac, the pericardium that is inflamed and irritated sac; this is called pericarditis Of the numerous conditions that cause this, I’ll name four. heart attack, heart surgery, infection, other inflammatory conditions, such as lupus and rheumatoid arthritis.  When the layers of the pericardial.sac rub together they cause a lot of pain. This pain can be so great that many feel like they are having a heart.

A pretty important organ, the heart is protected by the ribs.and also protected by the fluid-filled sac that surrounds it, the pericardium; 

In many cases, pericarditis can be treated. HOWEVER,  before it is treated with anti-inflammatories it is very important that a serious cardiac event is ruled out, so you will first undergo a thorough cardiac workup.

Once a cardiac workup proves that you aren’t having a heart attack, then you may be offered. antiinflammatories. Motrin (Ibuprofen), or sometimes a medication called colchicine. Normally used for gout, colchicine is a powerful anti-inflammatory. If colchicine is not effective, you may be given steroids, like prednisone.

 

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