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Pericarditis and Perimyocarditis Associated with Active Mycoplasma pneumoniae Infection

MILTON J. SANDS Jr., M.D.; JAY E. SATZ, Ph.D.; WALLACE E. TURNER Jr., Ph.D.; and LOUIS A. SOLOFF, M.D., F.A.C.P.
[+] Article and Author Information

This paper was presented at the 57th Annual Session of the American College of Physicians, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 5 April 1976.

▸Requests for reprints should be addressed to Jay E. Satz, Ph.D.; Bureau of Laboratories, Pennsylvania Department of Health, 2100 W. Girard Ave.; Philadelphia, PA 19130.


Philadelphia, Pennsylvania


Ann Intern Med. 1977;86(5):544-548. doi:10.7326/0003-4819-86-5-544
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In 13 patients an association existed from 1970-73 between Mycoplasma pneumoniae infection and acute pericarditis (in eight) or perimyocarditis (in five). In 12 patients the association was moderately probable, with a fourfold rise in complement-fixing antibody titers between acute and convalescent phase sera being noted. In the last patient, a lesser-order association was found using only convalsecent phase serum. The presence of influenza, herpes simplex, Coxsackie B, or adenovirus was excluded by serologic testing. Acute illnes was variable, with four patients developing heart failure. Long-term evaluation (mean, 47 months) found eight patients asymptomatic and three symptomatic. Two patients died. Residual effects of the mycoplasma infection seemed at least partially responsible in one compromised patient and in one who died. Mycoplasma infection should be considered in the presence of acute cardiovascular decompensation, especially when preceded by upper respiratory infection, and added to the possible causes of idiopathic cardiomyopathy.

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