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Cardiac tamponade in a neonate: a dreadful condition—need for functional echo
  1. Venkatesh Harohalli Aswathanarayana Iyer,
  2. Deepa Mohan Sharma,
  3. Siddhu Charki,
  4. Pankaj Kumar Mohanty
  1. Department of Neonatology, Manipal Hospital, Bangalore, Karnataka, India
  1. Correspondence to Dr Venkatesh Harohalli Aswathanarayana Iyer, venkatveena46{at}


Cardiac tamponade is a clinical emergency. Detection of a swinging heart rate is one of the earliest markers of large pericardial effusion, in which the four cardiac chambers are free to float in a phasic manner. We present a case of a preterm baby, one of the twins, who developed sudden onset of deterioration in the form of swinging heart rate, fluctuation in blood pressure and desaturation, requiring emergency intubation and inotropic support. Bedside functional echo was performed, which demonstrated cardiac tamponade; an immediate echocardiography-guided tap was initiated and fluid was aspirated from the pericardial space.

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