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Diagnosis of Cardiac Tamponade

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Course Details

Credit/contact hours: .5
Estimated time to complete: 30 minutes
Publication Date: March 14, 2019
Expiration date: March 14, 2025
Reviewed: March 13, 2022


In many conditions, pericardial effusions can accompany pericardial disease. These effusions can be small and benign, or larger and hemodynamically significant depending on pericardial compliance and other factors. Cardiac tamponade has typical symptoms and signs, although these can be subtle and require careful attention. Typical findings of cardiac tamponade on physical exam and in the cardiac catheterization laboratory are described and discussed.

You Will Learn

  • To differentiate pericardial effusions from cardiac tamponade based on symptoms, signs, and hemodynamic measurements
  • To enumerate the typical physical findings and significance of pericardial effusion in a clinical context
  • To differentiate the typical findings of cardiac tamponade in the cardiac catheterization laboratory from other related conditions

Method and medium:

Learners participate in the interactive learning modules by correctly answering multiple choice questions dispersed throughout. Learners will be prompted to try again if a question is answered incorrectly.The course will open in a new tab - to exit the course, simply close that tab.

Michael Ragosta III, MD

Dr. Michael Ragosta is an attending cardiologist at the University of Virginia Health System with a sub-specialty in interventional cardiology. His clinical practice includes complex percutaneous coronary intervention, myocardial infarction, valvular heart disease, structural heart disease, and general cardiology. Dr. Ragosta is the Director of the Cardiac Catheterization Laboratories at UVA and author of numerous textbooks related to cardiac catheterization and hemodynamic interpretation.

DISCLOSURE: This individual reports no relevant financial relationships with commercial entities.

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