Pathophysiology: Dressler syndrome is a secondary form of pericarditis that occurs in the setting of injury to the heart or the pericardium (the outer lining of the heart). Dressler syndrome is also known as postmyocardial infarction syndrome and the term is sometimes used to refer to post-pericardiotomy pericarditis. It is believed to be an immune system response after damage to heart tissue or to the pericardium, from events such as a heart attack, surgery or traumatic injury. Dressler syndrome needs to be differentiated from pulmonary embolism, another identifiable cause of pleuritic (and non-pleuritic) chest pain in people who have been hospitalized and/or undergone surgical procedures within the preceding weeks.
Symptoms: They are likely to appear weeks to months after a heart attack, surgery or injury to the chest. Symptoms include chest pain and fever.
Treatment: Main treatment involves managing pain and reducing the inflammation. Usage of drugs like Aspirin, Ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin IB, others), Naproxen (Aleve) improves the condition. Corticosteroids can have serious side effects and might interfere with the healing of damaged heart tissue after a heart attack or surgery. For those reasons, corticosteroids are generally used only when other treatments don't work.