Multiple cardiovascular complications in a patient with relapsing polychondritis

Mayo Clin Proc. 2002 Sep;77(9):971-4. doi: 10.4065/77.9.971.


Relapsing polychondritis is an uncommon disease of unknown etiology, usually manifested by inflammatory changes of cartilaginous tissues. Cardiovascular complications are rare but have been associated with adverse prognosis. Aortitis, vasculitis of large- and medium-sized arteries with aneurysm formation, valvulitis, pericarditis, and atrioventricular conduction disturbances have been reported as late complications of relapsing polychondritis. We describe a 42-year-old man who developed all the known cardiovascular complications of relapsing polychondritis except for clinically evident pericarditis. This case illustrates the multiple, varied, and potentially fatal cardiovascular complications that can occur with this disorder. Patients with relapsing polychondritis should be monitored closely for development of such complications.

Publication types

  • Case Reports
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Cardiovascular Diseases / etiology*
  • Cardiovascular Diseases / therapy
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Polychondritis, Relapsing* / complications
  • Polychondritis, Relapsing* / diagnosis
  • Polychondritis, Relapsing* / therapy
  • Time Factors
  • Treatment Outcome