I think your family's strategy of getting your sister well and then getting treated at one of the experienced centers is a good strategy. Even the open heart surgeons locally would rather refer a patient with CP to a surgeon that has experience performing a pericardiectomy. Please keep us updated on which clinic she chooses.
I am sorry and I can totally understand your frustration with pericarditis. My life has been turned upside down since March '05 when I had my most severe attack. At times I feel fine and without warning miserable the next moment. My pericardium may have been injured from a bad fall about 8 years ago but I am not 100% sure and no physician can verify this. I do not recall any severe fevers but I can not rule it out either. I had a lot of X-rays when I was 10 years old due to a fractured femur, but could that be enough radiation to cause damage??
Try thinking about your history of sicknesses or injuries and see if that may have been the cause of your pericarditis. If NSAIDS or colchicine can control your pericarditis attacks then continue to do so. In my case when I was having the attack I thought it was coronary artery disease so I did not take anti-inflammatory drugs. My doctor thought it was heartburn so I did not get proper treatment at the right time and now I feel the squeezing of the heart and pericardial rubbing at times due to the pericardium not being as compliant as it should. The pain from a pericarditis attack is different from the pain associated with CP, as I have experienced both.
What type of pain or symptoms are you feeling?