BMJ Case Reports 2016; doi:10.1136/bcr-2016-215686

Pericardial effusion with Mycobacterium avium complex in HIV-infected patients

  1. Irfan Hafeez2
  1. 1Department of GUM, East Lancashire Hospitals NHS Trust, Burnley, UK
  2. 2Department of General Medicine, East Lancashire Hospitals NHS Trust, Blackburn, UK
  1. Correspondence to Dr Thajunnisha Mohamed Buhary, thajunbasheer{at}
  • Accepted 19 June 2016
  • Published 7 July 2016


Disseminated atypical Mycobacterium infection is a well-known opportunistic infection in HIV-infected patients with advanced immune deficiency before the introduction of combination antiretroviral therapy. Although the disseminated infection is now rare, few cases of localised infections are reported. A 38-year-old man was diagnosed with HIV infection during asymptomatic sexual health screening. Although he was asymptomatic on diagnosis, he had advanced immunodeficiency; therefore, combination antiretroviral therapy was started immediately. After 5 months of treatment, he developed pericardial effusion. Mycobacterium was detected from a culture of the pericardial fluid and Mycobacterium avium complex was identified using a gene probe test. He was treated with combination therapy for Mycobacterium infection and he fully recovered. Treatment continued for 4 years until he achieved adequate immune recovery.

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