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Brazilian Journal of Cardiovascular Surgery

Print version ISSN 0102-7638On-line version ISSN 1678-9741


PALMA, José Honório et al. Video-thoracoscopic pericardial drainage in the treatment of pericardial effusions. Rev Bras Cir Cardiovasc [online]. 2009, vol.24, n.1, pp.44-49. ISSN 0102-7638.

OBJECTIVES: To assess efficacy and safety of videothoracoscopic pericardial drainage in the treatment and diagnostic of pericardial effusion through 26 cases review. METHODS: From April 2005 to December 2007, 26 patients with pericardial effusion underwent a video-thoracoscopic pericardial window. Median age was 48.2 years old. Dyspnea was the most frequent symptom followed by thoracic pain. The procedure was performed in lateral decubitus, under general anesthesia and selective intubation with the aid of three trocars. RESULTS: Procedure accomplish was feasible in 25 cases. One conversion occurred. In 61.53% of the cases the procedure was able to modify the initial diagnosis. Microbiology and tissue culture were negative in all cases. Neoplasia was present in nine cases, tuberculosis in two, aspergillosis in one, postoperative heart surgeries in three; lupus in two, uremia in one and idiopathy in eight. Associated pleuropulmonary procedures were performed in four cases. No deaths related to the procedure occurred. One late recurrence was recorded. CONCLUSION: The procedure is feasible, safe, reproducible and allowed an etiologic diagnostic. Specific treatment could be initiated in some cases. The intervention could possibly be the new gold standard treatment of pericardial effusion in selected patients.

Keywords : Pericardium; Thoracic surgery, video-assisted; Pericardial effusion [surgery].

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