Cardiac hydatidosis is a rare manifestation of Echinococcus infection. It represents 0.5 to 2% of hydatic disease (Mustafa et al., Can J Cardiol 22:2, 2006). The most common localization is the myocardium of the left ventricle but can also touch the right ventricle, atrium, pericardium, interventricular septum, and pulmonary artery. Clinical presentation is varied ranging from clinical latency or minor symptoms to cardiogenic shock and sudden death. The present case describes a primary pericardial hydatid cyst, a very exceptional localization of cardiac hydatidosis, which can lead to a delayed diagnosis or to an erroneous treatment that can expose the life of the patient to complications and death if it is not considered. Diagnosis can be established by cardiac imaging and hydatid serology. Therapy management should combine both surgery and medical treatment by albendazole or mebendazole.
We report a 70-year-old woman from Sale, who was admitted for dyspnea New York Heart Association (NYHA) class IV evolving in a febrile context with signs of right heart failure related to a rupture of a primary pericardial hydatid cyst with pre-tamponade. The diagnosis was confirmed by echocardiography, computed tomography scan (CT scan), and hydatic serology, and the patient was operated and put on albendazole for 3 months with favorable clinical course.
The aims of this article are to consider the diagnosis of cardiac hydatid cysts in the presence of pericardial effusion, especially if there is a prior history of hydatid disease, a contact with animals, or when it occurs in an endemic country, and to be able to make a differential diagnosis with cardiac imaging in order to avoid its complications and to guide the management.