According to WebMD, fluid around the heart can indicate pericardial effusion, which is also known as pericarditis. Fluid fills the sac surrounding the heart, the pericardium, and causes symptoms including fever, fatigue and shortness of breath. Viral infections are the leading cause of pericarditis, but there are other, less-common causes that patients can suffer from.Continue Reading
The Mayo Clinic explains that the pericardium usually contains two or three tablespoons of pericardial fluid, which allows the heart to move freely as it beats. Small pericardial effusions may contain up to 100 millilitres of fluid, whereas more severe cases can involve as much as 2 liters. Pericardial effusions usually occur as a result of inflammation, which causes excess fluid production. Viruses like coxsackievirus and HIV are among the leading causes. Other causes include autoimmune disorders such as rheumatoid arthritis, a reaction to heart surgery, underactive thyroid or trauma to the heart.
Patients suffering from pericarditis experience a range of symptoms, explains the Mayo Clinic, including feeling short of breath, feeling uncomfortable when lying down or chest pain at any time, coughing, a low-grade fever, fainting and a rapid heart rate. Patients experiencing these symptoms should see a physician, and those who experience chest pain and difficulty breathing should call 911, as such symptoms can indicate a cardiac emergency.Learn more about Diagnostics & Imaging
Causes for abnormal electrocardiogram results include damage to the heart muscle, a congenital heart defect, swelling or fluid in the sac around the heart, and inflammation of the heart, explains MedlinePlus. Other potential causes include poor blood flow to the heart or a past or current heart attack.Full Answer >
Some explanations for a T-wave abnormality on an ECG include myocardial infarction or ischemia, pericarditis, myocarditis, myocardial contusion due to trauma, and mitral valve prolapse, according to ECG Learning Center. The cause for T-wave changes on an ECG is based on the type of abnormality that is present.Full Answer >
In some cases, fluid on the lungs, or pleural effusion, is dealt with by treating the cause of the fluid build-up, such as pneumonia or congestive heart failure, according to WebMD. In urgent cases, doctors must drain the fluid. Other procedures address severe inflammation and prevent recurrence.Full Answer >
Pleural effusion is a medical condition in which too much fluid builds up behind the pleura. These are the spaces between the membranes that encase the lungs. It is normal to have some fluid in these spaces, but when symptoms like shortness of breath arise, medical help should be sought.Full Answer >