The cases of 17 patients with tuberculous pericarditis were reviewed. Thirteen patients had effusive pericarditis, and 10 had surgical drainage of the effusion. No deaths were due to pericardial tamponade; this appears to be related to earlier recognition of major pericardial effusions by echocardiography. In 2 patients clinical evidence of pericardial constriction developed while they were on a regimen of therapy, and in another 2 patients, echocardiography revealed pericardial thickening after resolution of the effusion. A pericardial window is recommended for the short-term management of patients suspected of having tuberculous pericarditis with a major pericardial effusion by echocardiography. If a thickened pericardium is found during the window procedure, early pericardiectomy is strongly encouraged.