May 28th, 2018

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Pulmonary Artery Dissection Leading to Cardiac Tamponade as a Cause of Maternal Death in a Woman with Pulmonary Hypertension: A Case Report
Authors:  John P. Barrett, M.D., Anita Ramlall, M.D., Therese Kirsch, M.D., and Daniel Artiles-Martinez, M.D.
BACKGROUND: Severe pulmonary hypertension in pregnancy is known to carry a 40% risk of death for the mother. The most common cause of death in cases of pulmonary hypertension is heart failure.

CASE: We present a case of maternal death due to dissection of the pulmonary artery resulting in cardiac tamponade.

CONCLUSION: The sudden onset of severe chest pain radiating to the back should alert the clinician to the possibility of pulmonary artery dissection in pregnant patients with pulmonary hypertension. Severe chest pain may not be accompanied by changes in vital signs or oxygen saturation. Immediate delivery should be considered. However, delivery may worsen the motherís condition due to postpartum cardiovascular changes.
Keywords:  congenital heart defect; hypertension, pregnancy-induced; hypertension, pulmonary; pulmonary heart disease; pulmonary hypertension in pregnancy
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