The effects of HIV/AIDS on the clinical profile and outcomes post pericardectomy of patients with constrictive pericarditis : a retrospective review.
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Constrictive Pericarditis (CP) is an uncommon condition which is a known treatable cause of heart failure. It is a condition that affects people from both developed and developing countries. In developed countries the aetiology of CP has undergone a paradigm shift away from infectious causes such as tuberculosis to acquired causes such as previous cardiac surgery and mediastinal radiotherapy for cancer. In the developing world by far the commonest cause remains tuberculosis. All aspects of CP have been widely studies in developed countries however there is limited data and studies on the condition from developing countries and more specifically African countries where tuberculosis is endemic. In South Africa the HIV/AIDS pandemic in association with persistent widespread poverty and poor socio-economic conditions has ensured that the incidence of tuberculosis infection remains exceedingly high. There have been numerous studies done evaluating the incidence, pathophysiology and treatment of tuberculous pericarditis in the HIV era. There however very limited data available describing CP in a South African setting. The objectives of this single centre study are to contrast the clinical profiles; surgical outcomes and short term follow up of patients diagnosed with CP at Inkosi Albert Luthuli Hospital. Through this study we hope to gain insight into the effects of HIV on patients with CP and determine whether it has any influence on the natural history and outcomes when compared to HIV uninfected individuals. It is hoped that information gained from this study will serve to further assist medical professionals in their understanding of CP and aim to improve both our management of patients with this debilitating condition and ultimately there life expectancy. In addition it is hoped that that study might serve as a catalyst for larger prospective studies in this field. Results missing (abstract) i.e aim, method, conclusion.