2 - Qatar Critical Care Conference Proceedings
  • ISSN: 0253-8253
  • EISSN: 2227-0426


Extracorporeal Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (ECPR) has been increasingly usedfor failed conventional CPR. Successful use in sudden major vessel rupture hasn't been reported. Cases of community-acquired methicillin-resistant staphylococcus aureus (CA-MRSA) pericarditis associated with major vessel rupture however are limited in number1 with a reported mortality of 20–30%.2 Here we present a case of CA-MRSA pericarditis that was complicated by aortic rupture in which ECPR was successfully utilized. A four-year-old boy presented with fever, abdominal pain and vomiting for one day. He had a fall from a tricycle with potential abdominal injury the day before and had a small gluteal abscess present for four days. Examination showed slight tachycardia, mild tachypnea and low-grade fever. CBC showed neutrophilic leukocytosis. Initial chest x-ray, electrocardiogram, and abdominal tomography scan were normal. He was managed with analgesics and covered with ceftriaxone. Chest CT done on the third day due to tachypneashowed pericardial and bilateral pleural effusions. Echocardiography showed a large pericardial effusion with a collapsing atrium, indicating tamponade. Emergency pericardiocentesis retrieved 120 ml of serosanguinous fluid. A pigtail catheter was left in-situ. Intravenous vancomycin was added to the antibiotic coverage. Pericardial fluid culture grew MRSA. He showed clinical improvement, and inflammatory markers showed progressive decrease. Pericardial drain was removed after five days as the drained fluid became minimal. Subsequent echocardiograms showed only debris in the pericardial space.

Five days later while looking well, he coughed, desaturated, and became hemodynamically unstable. He was resuscitated for 55 minutes, during which he mostly had pulseless electrical activity. Bedside sternotomy was done during resuscitation to initiate central ECMO as part of ECPR. The pericardial sac was bulging, and when opened, around 500 ml of fresh blood with clots came out. Blood jets were coming from the ascending aorta which was found ruptured and covered with a thick layer of organized pus. Pus was removed from around the superior vena cava, right ventricle and ascending aorta, and the aorta was sutured.The patient was connected to femoral VA ECMO as the aortic wall was very friable. The patient was decannulated from ECMO after 3 days and discharged from hospital after 2 months. At discharge, he was alert, communicating and had generalized weakness. MRI brain showed hypoxic ischemic changes. This is the first pericarditis case reported to develop aortic rupture, and the first to survive after a pericarditis-associated major vessel rupture, with utilization of ECPR and timely surgical repair. One case ofMRSA purulent pericarditiswith pulmonary trunk rupture was reported in a 68 year old woman who expired due to massive bleeding and difficulty of surgical repair.3 Although pericardiectomy should be considered from the outset in the management of purulent pericarditis,4 surgical intervention was not considered initially as the aspirated pericardial fluid was visually serosanguinous andsubsequent echocardiograms didn't show reaccumulation. Prior to admission, there was a small gluteal abscess, which probably served as the portal of entry for the MRSA but was dry at the time of admission and was not sampled.


Article metrics loading...

Loading full text...

Full text loading...



  1. Kariyanna PT, Jayarangaiah A, Pedalino R, Hegde S, Marmur JD, Shenoy A, et al.  Esophago-pericardial Fistula Induced Community Acquired Methicillin Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus (CA-MRSA) Cardiac Tamponade - A Rare Case Report and Literature Review. Am J Med Case Rep. 2018; 6:6:109113.
    [Google Scholar]
  2. Oizumi H, Ichinokawa H, Hoshino H, Shitara J, Suzuki K. Pericardial Window for Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus aureus Pericarditis. Ann Thorac Surg. 2019; 107:1:e27e29.
    [Google Scholar]
  3. Saito S, Matsuura A, Miyahara K, Takemura H, Sawaki S, Ito H. Infected aortic aneurysm, purulent pericarditis, and pulmonary trunk rupture caused by methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus. Gen Thorac Cardiovasc Surg. 2009; 57:5:250252.
    [Google Scholar]
  4. Adler Y, Charron P, Imazio M, Badano L, Barón-Esquivias G, Bogaert J, et al.  ESC Guidelines for the diagnosis and management of pericardial diseases: The Task Force for the Diagnosis and Management of Pericardial Diseases of the European Society of Cardiology (ESC)Endorsed by: The European Association for Cardio-Thoracic Surgery (EACTS). Eur Heart J. 2015; 36:42:29212964.
    [Google Scholar]

Data & Media loading...

  • Article Type: Conference Abstract
Keyword(s): aortic ruptureECMOECPRpericarditis and Staphylococcus aureus
This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address
Approval was a Success
Invalid data
An Error Occurred
Approval was partially successful, following selected items could not be processed due to error