Cardiac tuberculosis refers to the rare infection of the cardiac musculature with Mycobacterium tuberculosis.
Generally associated with and occurring as a complication of mediastinal and pulmonary tuberculosis.
Pericardial and myocardial involvement is known. Endocardial spread may occur from myocardium. Modes of spread to the myocardium are via lymphatics from mediastinal nodes, directly from the pericardium, or via a haematogenous route.
- acute stage: no findings in heart; active lung infection may be present
- chronic stage: pericardial calcification
- pericardial effusion (mild)
- pericardial thickening
- pericardial calcification (chronic stage)
- T1: nodular lesion which appear isointense to slightly hyperintense
- T2: isointense
- C+ Gd: mild heterogeneous enhancement
Treatment and prognosis
Patients generally respond well to antituberculous therapy. Clinical examination, known primary pulmonary infection and follow-up examinations will help confirm the diagnosis.
Imaging differential considerations include:
- 1. Gulati GS, Kothari SS. Diffuse infiltrative cardiac tuberculosis. Ann Pediatr Cardiol. 2011;4 (1): 87-9. doi:10.4103/0974-2069.79635 - Free text at pubmed - Pubmed citation
- 2. Rose AG. Cardiac tuberculosis. A study of 19 patients. Arch. Pathol. Lab. Med. 1987;111 (5): 422-6. Pubmed citation
- 3. Harisinghani MG, McLoud TC, Shepard JA et-al. Tuberculosis from head to toe. Radiographics. 2000;20 (2): 449-70. doi:10.1148/radiographics.20.2.g00mc12449 - Pubmed citation
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