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Hi! My brother was complaining of sharp chest pain for few weeks. Yesterday he went to doctor and his diagnosis is acute pericarditis. Doctor told him that it is probably caused by some viral infection. Can somebody tell me, please, can pericarditis be caused by viral infection? And what kind of infection? Thanks!

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Yes. The most common cause of pericarditis is viral infection. Pericarditis is usually a complication of viral infections, most commonly echovirus or cocksackie viruses. Less frequently, it can be caused by influenza or HIV infection. As I know, a typical patient with acute pericarditis is a young man who recently suffered respiratory infection.
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