Factors that may increase your risk of endocarditis include:
- Having an artificial heart valve
- History of endocarditis
- History of rheumatic fever , which can damage heart valves
- Heart defects
- Enlarged heart
- Mitral valve prolapse
- History of IV drug use
Recent procedures that can lead to
- Tooth cleaning
- Tonsillectomy and adenoidectomy
- Surgery on the gastrointestinal, urinary, or respiratory tracts
- Gallbladder or prostate surgery
Symptoms of endocarditis include:
- Fever, chills
- Weakness, low energy
- Sweatiness, especially at night
- Shortness of breath
- Loss of appetite, weight loss
- Chest pain
- Abdominal pain
- Nausea and vomiting
- Painful red bumps on the fingers and toes
- Purple dots on the whites of the eyes, under the fingernails, and over the collarbone
- Painful red patches on the fingers, palms, and soles
If you have a high risk of infection:
- You may need to take antibiotics before certain dental or medical procedures.
- Talk to your dentist or doctor before the procedure.
The American Heart Association guidelines recommend that preventive antibiotic therapy should be considered for individuals with the following cardiac conditions:
- Various forms of congenital heart defects
- Artificial heart valves
- History of endocarditis
- Heart transplant recipients who have developed valve disease
Avoiding illicit IV drugs will also decrease your risk of infection.
This content is reviewed regularly and is updated when new and relevant evidence is made available. This information is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with questions regarding a medical condition.
Edits to original content made by Denver Health.
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American Heart Association http://www.heart.org
Mouth Healthy—American Dental Association http://www.mouthhealthy.org
Canadian Dental Association http://www.cda-adc.ca
Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada http://www.heartandstroke.com
Infective endocarditis. American Heart Association website. Available at: http://www.heart.org/HEARTORG/Conditions/CongenitalHeartDefects/TheImpactofCongenitalHeartDefects/Infective-Endocarditis%5FUCM%5F307108%5FArticle.jsp. Updated March 20, 2013. Accessed March 20, 2013.
Infective endocarditis. EBSCO DynaMed Plus website. Available at: http://www.dynamed.com/topics/dmp~AN~T113919/Infective-endocarditis . Updated April 20, 2016. Accessed September 28, 2016.
12/17/2015 DynaMed Plus Systematic Literature Surveillance http://www.dynamed.com/topics/dmp~AN~T113919/Infective-endocarditis : Wilson W, Taubert KA, et al. Prevention of infective endocarditis. Guidelines from the American Heart Association. Circulation. 2007;116(15):1736-1754.