Pericarditis is inflammation of the thin layer of membrane that covers the heart.

Treatment: Treatment is usually aspirin every 3 to 4 hours and/or a nonsteroidal medicine. Your health care provider may prescribe steroid drugs if pericarditis is a complication of a heart attack, connective tissue disease or metabolic problem. You can also take nonprescription drugs such as acetaminophen for relief of minor aches and pains.