What is the incidence of acute pericarditis?

Updated: Apr 02, 2019
  • Author: Sean Spangler, MD; Chief Editor: Terrence X O'Brien, MD, MS, FACC  more...
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Epidemiologic data on the incidence of acute pericarditis are lacking, likely because this condition is frequently inapparent clinically, despite its presence in numerous disorders. However, it appears to be the most common form of pericardial disease and a relatively common cause of chest pain. [1]

Lorell noted a diagnosis of acute pericarditis in approximately 1 per 1000 hospital admissions. [23] In addition, acute pericarditis comprises 1% of emergency room visits in patients with ST-segment elevation. [24] In fact, the reported incidence of acute pericardial tamponade is approximately 2% of penetrating trauma; however, this condition is rarely seen in blunt chest trauma.

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