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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Acute ST Segment Elevation Myocardial Infarction and Massive Pericardial Effusion Due to Infective Endocarditis

  • Author(s): Thompson, Maxwell
  • Pigott, David C.
  • Gullett, John
  • Gibson, Blayke
  • et al.

Chest pain is a common complaint evaluated in the emergency department. While chest pain in a 22-year-old patient is typically a complaint of low acuity, high-acuity cases that rival those of the older patient population are well documented. We describe a case of complicated infective endocarditis in which point-of-care ultrasound (POCUS) aided the diagnosis of ST-elevation myocardial infarction secondary to a septic thrombus in a 22-year-old female with a history of intravenous drug use. Emergency physicians should be aware of the rare high-acuity cases as well as the impact of POCUS on rapid clinical assessment and treatment of patients of all ages presenting with chest pain.

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