Pericarditis is a frequent complication of uremia in both acute and chronic renal failure.1 The recognition of uremic pericarditis has been important for three reasons: 1. The onset of pericarditis in uremia has been found to have prognostic significance.2 2. Pericarditis is frequently the cause of confusing and distressing pain.3 3. Electrocardiographic abnormalities occurring late in uremia are often the result of pericarditis.4
Two cases of chronic renal failure, which were seen recently in this hospital, have served to illustrate another significant aspect of uremic pericarditis. In both instances the immediate cause of death was cardiac tamponade, which was a complication of uremic pericarditis. Because of the lack of appreciation of tamponade as a complication of uremic pericarditis in textbooks and the literature, it was thought that a report of these cases would be of interest.
Report of Cases
A 29-year-old man entered the