• Morbidly Obese Complex Obstetrical Patient with Undiagnosed Peripartum Cardiomyopathy and Development of Flash Pulmonary Edema in PACU

      Donald, Ranita R.; Crews, Lindsay K; Department of Anesthesiology and Perioperative Medicine (International Anesthesia Research Society, 2010-05)
      Peripartum cardiomyopathy (PPCM) is a rare disorder of uncertain etiology. Virchow and Porack first recognized the relationship between heart failure and pregnancy in the 1870s when they noted myocardial degeneration in patients who died in the postpartum period. PPCM was first described as a distinctive cardiomyopathy in 1937 by Gouley et al. Since then, much has been learned about this disease process, and better treatment options now exist. Incidence varies greatly worldwide. Reports suggest an incidence of 1 case per 299 live births in Haiti, 1 per 1000 in South Africa, and 1 per 3000-4000 in the United States. Reported mortality rates are between 18% and 56%. A latent form of PPCM has also been described. Here we describe a case of latent PPCM in a morbidly obese patient who developed dramatic flash pulmonary edema in the postanesthesia care unit.