Humoral Immunity and Heart Disease: Postpericardiotomy Syndrome

  • Mary Allen Engle
Part of the Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology book series (AEMB, volume 161)


Historically it was adults with rheumatic heart disease and mitral stenosis who first suffered from the common postoperative complication of the postpericardiotomy syndrome (PPS). Fever appeared or persisted beyond the first postoperative week together with signs and symptoms of pericardial reaction: chest pain, pericardial friction rub, electrocardiographic as well as radiographic evidence of pericarditis and often of pericardial and pleural effusions, together with leukocytosis and less specific sign of inflammation. In the setting of rheumatic mitral stenosis, it was natural to assume that this postoperative illness was due to reactivation of rheumatic fever and to treat the patients with medication considered beneficial in acute rheumatic fever: salicylates or steroids.


Rheumatic Fever Rheumatic Heart Disease Acute Rheumatic Fever Viral Illness Rheumatic Mitral Stenosis 
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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1983

Authors and Affiliations

  • Mary Allen Engle
    • 1
  1. 1.The New York Hospital-Cornell Medical CenterNew YorkUSA

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