Severe right ventricular contusion mimicking cardiac tamponade: the value of transesophageal echocardiography in blunt chest trauma

Ann Emerg Med. 1993 Apr;22(4):745-7. doi: 10.1016/s0196-0644(05)81862-1.


Clinically, severe right ventricular contusion may mimic cardiac tamponade. We report two cases of suspected cardiac tamponade after blunt chest trauma in which the diagnosis of severe right ventricular contusion was made only by transesophageal echocardiography, avoiding unnecessary and hazardous pericardiocentesis. These cases illustrate the value of transesophageal echocardiography in diagnosing blunt chest trauma.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Cardiac Tamponade / diagnosis*
  • Contusions / diagnosis
  • Diagnostic Errors
  • Echocardiography / methods
  • Heart Ventricles / injuries*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Thoracic Injuries / diagnosis*
  • Thoracic Injuries / physiopathology
  • Thoracic Injuries / therapy
  • Wounds, Nonpenetrating / diagnosis*
  • Wounds, Nonpenetrating / physiopathology
  • Wounds, Nonpenetrating / therapy