May 292019

20190328_105252_0A 32-year-old woman was admitted to Almazov National Medical Research Centre from Veliky Novgorod with a diagnosis of constrictive pericarditis.

This disease requires surgery, i.e. pericardectomy — the surgical removal of a portion or all of the pericardium. Not many hospitals are ready to provide such treatment.

This rare condition results from inflammation of the pericardium, which is a sac-like membrane that surrounds the heart. The pericardial layers become rigid and thickened.

Over time, the pericardium stiffens and loses its elasticity, thus causing compression of the heart and affecting its contractility.

As the disease progresses, the heart cannot pump effectively. Drugs do not produce significant improvements. If left untreated, complications may lead to death.

After additional examinations, the specialists of Cardiovascular Surgery Department No. 3 at Almazov Centre, under the supervision of the department chief Vadim Grebennik, performed a subtotal pericardectomy. The surgery was performed off-pump.

As early as the following day, the patient was transferred from the intensive care unit to the ward. Now she feels well and is preparing for discharge.

Earlier, a similar surgery was performed by Almazov Center surgeons on a young man from
St. Petersburg who was admitted in a severe condition. The patient had good recovery and returned to normal life.