Overview

Myocarditis is an inflammation of the heart muscle (myocardium). Myocarditis can affect your heart muscle and your heart's electrical system, reducing your heart's ability to pump and causing rapid or abnormal heart rhythms (arrhythmias).

A viral infection usually causes myocarditis, but it can result from a reaction to a drug or be part of a more general inflammatory condition. Signs and symptoms include chest pain, fatigue, shortness of breath, and arrhythmias.

Severe myocarditis weakens your heart so that the rest of your body doesn't get enough blood. Clots can form in your heart, leading to a stroke or heart attack.

Treatment for myocarditis depends on the cause.

Myocarditis care at Mayo Clinic