Pericarditis epidemiology and demographics

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Editor-In-Chief: C. Michael Gibson, M.S., M.D. [1]; Associate Editor(s)-in-Chief: Varun Kumar, M.B.B.S. Homa Najafi, M.D.[2]


The incidence of acute pericarditis is approximately 27.7 per 100,000 individuals annually. The recurrence of disease is seen in almost 30% of patients after first episode. The mortality rate of acute pericarditis is approximately 1.1% in developed countries. Patients of all age groups may develop acute pericarditis. Although it commonly affects men in 20 to 50 years of age. Pericarditis in developed countries is most commonly due to malignancy or viral infection. It usually follows respiratory infections, most commonly echovirus or coxsackie virus. In children, it is most commonly caused by adenovirus or coxsackie virus. In developing countries pericarditis is usually secondary to tuberculosis or HIV infection. Tuberculous pericarditis, caused by Mycobacterium tuberculosis, is found in approximately 1% of all autopsied cases of TB and in 1% to 2% of instances of pulmonary TB.

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