Pneumococcal pneumonia complicating purulent pericarditis in a previously healthy girl: A rare yet possible fatal complication in the antibiotic era

Fong Fong Lim, Hung Ming Chang, Ko Huang Lue, Ji Nan Sheu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

3 Citations (Scopus)


Purulent pericarditis is an extremely rare complication of invasive Streptococcus pneumoniae infection among children in the antibiotic era, and its mortality remains high if left untreated. This report involves a 41/2-year-old girl who presented to our emergency department with productive cough, shortness of breath, and left-sided chest pain with a diagnosis of pneumococcal pneumonia. She subsequently developed life-threatening conditions including bilateral empyema withrespiratory failure, purulent pericarditis, and multiple organ failure leading to death. The case highlights that purulent pericarditis is a rare yet possible disorder complicating pneumococcal disease in the antibiotic era. The increase in strains resistant to penicillin should alert emergency physicians to the potential for reemergence of pneumococcal pericarditis in children.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)751-753
Number of pages3
JournalPediatric Emergency Care
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2011
Externally publishedYes



  • Empyema
  • pneumonia
  • purulent pericarditis
  • Streptococcus pneumoniae

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Emergency Medicine

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