What kinds of treatment or procedures did you or a relative receive for pericarditis?
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What is the treatment for pericarditis?
Most often, pericarditis is caused by a viral infection and the treatment is aimed at decreasing inflammation and controlling pain.
Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs
or NSAIDs (ibuprofen [Motrin and others], naproxen
[Aleve, Naprosyn, and others]) are commonly used. A short course of narcotic pain medication may be helpful. For other causes of pericarditis, treatment of the underlying cause of pericarditis is essential.
Pericardiocentesis, a procedure where a thin needle is inserted through the chest wall into the pericardial sac, may be considered if a large effusion is present that affects heart function (see cardiac tamponade below).
Pericardotomy (cutting a hole in the pericardial sac) or pericardectomy (removing the sac completely) may be needed for recurrent pericarditis that causes scarring within the pericardial sac and prevents the heart from beating properly.