Infective endocarditis

Infective endocarditis

Fact Checked

Infective endocarditis is an infection affecting the endocardium or heart valves. Generally, the condition is usually due to bacteria originating in the skin, mouth, intestines, urinary tract or respiratory system.

Furthermore, this is a serious condition that requires immediate medical care. In case there is no treatment, it results to damage to the heart valves.

What are the indications?

Generally, the signs tend to vary from one individual to another. In some cases, the symptoms might arise abruptly while others develop steadily.

The common symptoms might include:

  • Chest pain
  • Fever
    Infective endocarditis
    The signs tend to vary from one individual to another. In some cases, the symptoms might arise abruptly while others develop steadily.
  • Chills
  • Weakness
  • Blood-streaked urine
  • Reddened skin rash
  • Sweating
  • Fatigue
  • Cough
  • Unusual urine color
  • White-colored spots in the mouth or on the tongue
  • Sore throat
  • Shortness of breath
  • Joint pain and swelling
  • Muscle pain
  • Nausea and/or vomiting
  • Sinus congestion
  • Weight loss
  • Headache

Management of infective endocarditis

Generally, infective endocarditis can result to permanent damage to the heart. If not detected and promptly treated, it can become dangerous. In addition, hospitalization is necessary to prevent the infection from worsening and causing complications.

Initial treatment

Upon hospitalization, the treatment involves monitoring of the vital signs. Generally, the doctor also starts intravenous antibiotics. When the individual is discharged, oral or IV antibiotics are continued for at least 4 weeks. In addition, regular blood testing is performed to ensure that the infection is eliminated.

Surgical intervention

Generally, in some instances, surgery is required if the heart valves are impaired. Furthermore, the doctor might decide to fix the heart valve. It might be replaced with a new valve made of artificial materials or animal tissue.

Consequently, this approach is also an option if antibiotics are not effective or if fungal in nature.


Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

The information posted on this page is for educational purposes only.
If you need medical advice or help with a diagnosis contact a medical professional

  • All content is reviewed by a medical professional and / sourced to ensure as much factual accuracy as possible.

  • We have strict sourcing guidelines and only link to reputable websites, academic research institutions and medical articles.

  • If you feel that any of our content is inaccurate, out-of-date, or otherwise questionable, please contact us through our contact us page.