Myocarditis

Myocarditis is an inflammation of the muscular wall of the heart. It can cause a rapid onset of heart failure or other complications.

Symptoms of myocarditis are similar to other heart-related diseases. Individuals should see their doctor to rule out a more serious disease.

Symptoms include:

•    Fever
•    Joint pain
•    Chest pain
•    Rapid heartbeat
•    Heart palpitations
•    Signs and symptoms of heart failure

Myocarditis can be caused by a series of illnesses including:

•    A viral, bacterial, parasitic or fungal infection  
•    rheumatic fever
•    diphtheria
•    Tuberculosis,
•    exposure to chemicals or radiation,
•    connective tissue diseases
•    toxic drug poisoning

Treatment options for myocarditis are dependent on the cause of the disease. If myocarditis is caused by a bacterial infection, most likely the doctor will prescribe antibiotics. Individuals will likely receive anti-inflammatory drugs to relieve pain, as well.

If myocarditis causes arrhythmia, you will be given antiarrhythmic medications, as well. Other treatment options may include bed rest and a salt/sodium restricted diet. In rare cases, if the condition is severe and unresponsive to treatment, a heart transplant may be necessary.

See your doctor for specific questions related to myocarditis especially related to diagnosis and treatment options.