We performed thoracoscopic pericardial fenestration for persistent pericardial effusion after radiotherapy for esophageal cancer. An 85-year-old man who had radiation therapy (70.2 Gy) for esophageal cancer was admitted for shortness of breath. Chest computed tomography showed a pericardial effusion. During the 6 months prior to this admission, the patient had undergone percutaneous pericardial drainage 3 times for cardiac tamponade. We performed thoracoscopic partial pericardiectomy with creation of a pleuropericardial window via one access port. Histopathologically, no malignant cells were found in either the resected pericardium or the pericardial effusion. Therefore, we believe the persistent pericardial effusion was secondary to radiotherapy. There was no recurrence of the pericardial effusion for 7 months postoperatively. In summary, thoracoscopic pericardial fenestration is useful in both the diagnosis and treatment of persistent pericardial effusion.