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Epipericardial fat necrosis: A case report.

Epipericardial fat necrosis is a rare cause of acute pleuritic chest pain and is a benign and self-limiting condition. It is important to distinguish epipericardial fat necrosis from other diseases that cause acute chest pain, such as acute myocardial infarction, pulmonary embolism, and acute pericarditis, because conservative treatment is recommended for epipericardial fat necrosis. This report presents the case of a 25-year-old man with severe pleuritic chest pain located on the left anterior side that was associated with dyspnea. Electrocardiogram and laboratory data were normal, except for a slight elevation of C-reactive protein level. Contrast-enhanced chest computed tomography revealed a fatty ovoid lesion surrounded by a thick rim on the left side of the pericardial fat. Fat stranding was observed both inside and adjacent to the fatty ovoid lesion. A slight contrast enhancement of the thick rim and a slight linear enhancement inside the lesion were observed. Furthermore, a small amount of left pleural effusion was observed. The patient was diagnosed with epipericardial fat necrosis and treated with analgesics, and the symptoms improved 1 week after the emergency department visit. Radiologists should be familiar with epipericardial fat necrosis to prevent overlooking and misdiagnosing the condition.

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