In a normal heart, a thin layer called the pericardium surrounds and protects the heart. There is a small amount of fluid between the pericardium and the heart. This fluid helps cushion the heart.
But sometimes too much fluid builds up in this space around the heart. This is called pericardial effusion. This extra fluid puts pressure on the heart and can cause chest pain and serious heart problems.
Current as of: December 16, 2019
Author: Healthwise Staff Medical Review: Rakesh K. Pai, MD - Cardiology, Electrophysiology Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine Martin J. Gabica, MD - Family Medicine Stephen Fort, MD, MRCP, FRCPC - Interventional Cardiology
Medical Review:Rakesh K. Pai, MD - Cardiology, Electrophysiology & Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine & Martin J. Gabica, MD - Family Medicine & Stephen Fort, MD, MRCP, FRCPC - Interventional Cardiology