Myocarditis presenting as gastritis in children

Yi Jung Chang, Hsun Chin Chao*, Shao Hsuan Hsia, Dah Chin Yan

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal Article peer-review

28 Scopus citations


Vomiting and abdominal pain are common pediatric complaints encountered by emergency physicians. The differential diagnosis of abdominal pain is extensive. Herein, we report 2 cases with fatal myocarditis who initially presented with abdominal pain and vomiting. Both cases were presented with abdominal pain, vomiting, and loose stools. On arrival at our emergency department, hypotension, tachycardia, and cyanotic extremities were found. Their serum troponin-I levels were elevated. The echocardiogram demonstrated poor left ventricular performance and a decreased ejection fraction. In both cases, an arrhythmia and a coma developed within hours and were shortly followed by death. The clinical presentations of acute myocarditis are variable, ranging from an initial mild discomfort to acute progressive heart failure, and at times, even death. Abdominal pain may be a manifestation of systemic disease, an extra-abdominal lesion, or myocarditis. Although myocarditis associated with abdominal pain or vomiting remains a diagnostic challenge to physicians, it should be considered in the differential diagnosis of children with gastritis and hypotension or who are refractory to rehydration therapy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)439-440
Number of pages2
JournalPediatric Emergency Care
Issue number6
StatePublished - 06 2006


  • Abdominal pain
  • Acute gastritis
  • Myocarditis
  • Shock


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