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Year : 2012  |  Volume : 58  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 147-149

Swiss cheese ventricular septal defect with myocarditis - A rare coexistence in a neonate

Department of Pediatrics, Division of Neonatology, BYL Nair Ch. Hospital and TN Medical College, Mumbai, Maharashtra, India

Correspondence Address:
A R Saboo
Department of Pediatrics, Division of Neonatology, BYL Nair Ch. Hospital and TN Medical College, Mumbai, Maharashtra
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0022-3859.97179

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Myocarditis is defined as acute inflammation of the myocardium, usually following a non-specific flu-like illness, and encompasses a wide range of clinical presentations ranging from mild or subclinical disease to heart failure. We report a 12-day-old healthy full-term neonate who presented with abrupt onset of congestive cardiac failure (CCF) following a viral prodrome. Examination revealed persistent sinus tachycardia, lymphocytosis, gross cardiomegaly, nonspecific electrocardiogram changes with echocardiography showing Swiss cheese ventricular septal defect (VSD). VSD alone very rarely presents as early-onset cardiac failure in the absence of other precipitating factors like anemia, sepsis, hypoglycemia etc. Myocarditis, however, can mimic VSD and can present as fulminant cardiac failure in an otherwise healthy newborn. Myocarditis is usually diagnosed based on circumstantial evidence such as a recent viral infection and the sudden onset of cardiac dysfunction while ruling out other diagnostic possibilities. Elevated troponin T level is one of the most crucial noninvasive diagnostic modalities. Several trials have concluded that levels >0.055 ng/ml are statistically significant for diagnosing myocarditis in children. In our case an abrupt onset of cardiac failure following a viral prodrome and markedly elevated cardiac troponin T without sepsis and in the presence of normal coronary anatomy clinched the diagnosis of myocarditis. An early and aggressive treatment for CCF along with regular long-term follow-up plays a key role in the management of myocarditis. Role of high-dose Intravenous immunoglobulin in myocarditis has been studied by many trials with different outcomes. This is the first case report showing coexistence of VSD with myocarditis in a neonate presenting as early-onset acute cardiac failure. The report highlights the importance of screening for myocarditis in all previously normal babies presenting primarily with cardiogenic symptoms even if a structural heart disease is coexistent early in life. A simplified algorithm for work-up of CCF in a neonate is proposed.


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Online since 12th February '04
2004 - Journal of Postgraduate Medicine
Official Publication of the Staff Society of the Seth GS Medical College and KEM Hospital, Mumbai, India
Published by Wolters Kluwer - Medknow