ISSN 2398-2985      

Pericardiocentesis

4ferrets

Synonym(s): Pericardial drainage, Pericardial tap


Introduction

  • Presence of pericardial effusion:
    • Particularly if cardiac tamponade and cardiovascular and respiratory compromise are present.
    • Secondary to cardiac disease.
    • Secondary to neoplasia: lymphoma.
  • Trauma: uncommonly reported in exotic animals.
  • Sampling of pericardial fluid for cytology Cytology: fine needle aspirate and/or microbial culture and sensitivity in pericardial disease: pericarditis (bacterial, fungal, inflammatory, migrating foreign body).

Uses

Advantages

  • Allows rapid reduction of increased pericardial pressures associated with pericardial effusion:
    • Acute management of clinical signs associated with cardiac tamponade and/or respiratory compromise.
  • Relatively non-invasive and low risk with sufficient expertise.

Disadvantages

  • Risk of cardiac puncture or pulmonary laceration.
  • Chemical restraint (sedation or general anesthesia Anesthesia: protocols) is usually required:
    • Increased anesthetic risk as majority of exotic animals requiring pericardiocentesis present with cardiovascular and/or respiratory compromise.
  • Risk of further hemorrhage in cases of hemorrhagic pericardial effusion due to coagulopathy or cardiac trauma.

Requirements

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Preparation

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Procedure

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Aftercare

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Outcomes

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Prognosis

  • Varies depending on etiology.
  • Prognosis can be guarded to poor if underlying cardiac disease or neoplasia identified.

Further Reading

Publications

Refereed Papers

  • Recent references from PubMed and VetMedResource.
  • Wagner R A (2009) Ferret cardiology. Vet Clin North Am Exot Anim Pract 12 (1), 115-134 PubMed.
  • Heatley J J (2009) Cardiovascular anatomy, physiology, and disease of rodents and small exotic mammals. Vet Clin North Am Exot Anim Pract 12 (1), 99-113 PubMed.

Other sources of information

  • Macphail C & Fossum T W (2018) Surgery of the Cardiovascular System. In: Small Animal Surgery E-Book. 5th edn. Ed: Fossum T W. Mosby, USA.
  • Monnet E (2017) Pericardial Surgery. In: Veterinary Surgery: Small Animal Expert Consult - E-BOOK. 2nd edn. Eds: Johnston S A & Tobias K M. Elsevier, USA.
  • Brown D, Gaillot H & Cunningham S (2015) Heart. In: Atlas of Small Animal Ultrasonography. Eds: Dominique P & Marc-Andre D A. Wiley-Blackwell, USA.

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