Last Updated on Sep 13, 2016

Diagnosis

Culture of a pathologic organism is regarded as the “gold standard” for the diagnosis of infective endocarditis.

A suspicion of endocarditis rises when the patient has fever with no obvious source of infection. Most of the signs and symptoms are nonspecific. The doctor tries to elicit the following history from the patient:

  • A heart valve disorder
  • An artificial heart valve
  • Recent history surgical, dental, or medical procedures;
  • History of injecting illicit drugs

On auscultation the doctor searches for heart murmur or change in the pre-existing murmur.

The two most important diagnostic modalities are:

Echocardiography: Imaging using ultrasound waves reveal vegetations and other damages to the heart. It is of two types: transthoracic echocardiography and trans-esophageal echocardiography. The latter is more accurate, but invasive and costly. The ultrasound probe is placed on the chest in transthoracic echocardiography. The ultrasound probe is passed down the throat into the esophagus just behind the heart in trans-esophageal echocardiography.

Blood samples: Three or more blood samples taken at different times on the same day. Blood culture helps the doctor to know the type of organism he is dealing with and helps him customise antibiotics.

Culture of a pathologic organism is regarded as the “gold standard” for the diagnosis of infective endocarditis. A number of clinical criteria based on which a diagnosis of IE can be made. The Modified Duke Criteria is the most accepted one.

References:

  1. Cecil Medicine, 23rd Ed.
  2. The Merck Manual, 18th Ed.

Comments

navyalikitha Thursday, June 28, 2012

MAY I KNOW THE RECENT ADVANCES IN THERAPY OF ENDOCARDITIS EXACTLY?? I MEAN ANY NEW DRUGS RECENTLY INVENTED etc...

Jams34 Saturday, February 11, 2012

WHAT ARE Z PROBLEMS IF U SENT US UR WEB SITE...SINCE WE WANT SOME IDEAS IN RELATION 2 HEALTH ...,I AM St. of health ...from Ethiopia...

aravind007 Saturday, February 19, 2011

why the rate of development of the disease can happen either quickly or slowly depending on the type of germ that causes it and the medical history of the patient?

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