What is a pericardial effusion?

Pericardial_effusion_with_tamponade
A large pericardial effusion. In this image, the structure bouncing from left to right is the heart, with the large black space surrounding it made up of excess fluid (the pericardial effusion). A comparison with a normal echocardiogram is below.

A pericardial effusion means you have an excess of fluid around the heart, which can push on the heart itself and cause problems.

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