Chest pain and diarrhea: A case of campylobacter jejuni-associated myocarditis

Ragesh Panikkath, Vanessa Costilla, Priscilla Hoang, Joseph Wood, James F. Gruden, Bob Dietrich, Michael B. Gotway, Christopher Appleton

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Background Diarrhea and chest pain are common symptoms in patients presenting to the emergency department (ED). However, rarely is a relationship between these two symptoms established in a single patient. Objective Describe a case of Campylobacter-associated myocarditis. Case Report A 43-year-old man with a history of hypertension presented to the ED with angina-like chest pain and a 3-day history of diarrhea. Electrocardiogram revealed ST-segment elevation in the lateral leads. Coronary angiogram revealed no obstructive coronary artery disease. Troponin T rose to 1.75 ng/mL. Cardiac magnetic resonance imaging showed subepicardial and mid-myocardial enhancement, particularly in the anterolateral wall and interventricular septum, consistent with a diagnosis of myocarditis. Stool studies were positive for Campylobacter jejuni. Conclusions Campylobacter-associated myocarditis is rare, but performing the appropriate initial diagnostic testing, including stool cultures, is critical to making the diagnosis. Identifying the etiology of myocarditis as bacterial will ensure that appropriate treatment with antibiotics occurs in addition to any cardiology medications needed for supportive care.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)180-183
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of Emergency Medicine
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2014


  • Campylobacter jejuni
  • diarrhea
  • myocarditis
  • myopericarditis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Emergency Medicine


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