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Sunday, 14 October 2018 18:06


Endocarditis, or infective endocarditis, is inflammation of your heart’s inner lining, called the endocardium. It usually occurs when bacteria or other germs from another part of your body, such as your mouth, spread through your bloodstream and attach to damaged areas in your heart. Left untreated, endocarditis can damage or destroy your heart valves and can lead to life-threatening complications.

Endocarditis is uncommon in people with healthy hearts. This infection can damage your heart and needs to be treated right away. If it isn't treated, endocarditis can be deadly.


Symptoms may appear quickly, within a few days of infection. In other cases, they may develop slowly. The symptoms will get worse as the bacteria or fungi grow in your heart.

Symptoms often include:

  • Flu-like symptoms, such as fever, chills, fatigue and night sweats
  • Weight loss
  • Muscle or joint pain
  • Coughing
  • Breathlessness
  • Blood under fingernails or small purple and/or red spots under the skin

If endocarditis isn't treated quickly, it can lead to more serious problems, such as:

Risk factors:

  • Previous endocarditis
  • You have an implanted heart device, such as a pacemaker or ICD
  • A hemodialysis access or a central venous catheter
  • Abnormal or damaged heart valves or an artificial heart valve
  • A congenital heart defect
  • Injected illegal drugs using dirty needles or without cleaning the skin
  • HIV


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