Novel, Long-axis In-plane Ultrasound-Guided Pericardiocentesis for Postoperative Pericardial Effusion Drainage
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Pericardial effusion can be a life-threatening complication in children after cardiac surgery. Percutaneous pericardiocentesis is associated with rare, but serious complications. This retrospective study describes our experience with a novel, long-axis in-plane real-time ultrasound (US)-guided technique for postoperative pericardial effusion drainage in small children. Ten out of sixteen procedures were performed within 14 days of cardiac surgery at a median postoperative day 12 (IQR 2, 99). Median age was 2.7 months (IQR 0.4124) and weight 4.5 kg (IQR 2.5, 41.6). All but one procedure required a single attempt. Fourteen out of sixteen procedures had subxiphoid approach, and two were apical. Median initial drainage was 9 mL/kg (IQR 4.5, 27). Fifty percent of effusions were serous, 25 % chylous, and the remainder bloody. There were no reported complications. This study demonstrates a novel, long-axis pericardiocentesis technique that allows for an easy and safe needle entry into the pericardial space for small children in the early postoperative period.
KeywordsUltrasound Pericardiocentesis Congenital heart disease Postoperative Neonate
This study was funded by University of Alabama at Birmingham Department of Pediatric Cardiology funds.
Compliance with Ethical Standards
Conflict of interest
The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.
All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Declaration of Helsinki and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards. For this type of study, formal consent is not required. This waiver was approved by the Institutional Review Board at the University of Alabama at Birmingham.
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