Prosthetic valve endocarditis

Academic Article


  • Fifty-three (3.6%; actuarially 4.1% at 48 months) of 1465 consecutive in-hospital survivors of valve replacement from 1975 to July 1979 (aortic, mitral, or aortic and mitral, only one untraced) developed prosthetic valve endocarditis (PVE). Incremental risk factors for developing PVE were native valve endocarditis (p < .0001), black race (p = .0001), mechanical prosthesis (vs bioprosthesis) (p = .005), male sex (p = .04), and longer cardiopulmonary bypass time (p = .09). In general, the hazard function for developing PVE was greatest at 3 weeks after valve replacement. Patients with native valve endocarditis had a tendency to develop PVE early after valve replacement, as did patients in whom mechanical prostheses were used. PVE associated with Staphylococcus epidermidis tended to appear within 6 months of valve replacement, whereas streptococcal PVE tended to appear later after valve replacement. PVE took an atypical form in some patients, but patients with possible PVE (n = 6) had the same findings as those with certain PVE (n = 47). In 11 patients, bacteriologic confirmation of PVE was not obtained. The typical prosthetic and periprosthetic characteristics of PVE were present in 30 of the 40 cases in which observations were possible. PVE is a serious condition; 34 (64%) of our 53 patients died. Most deaths occurred within 3 months of the first evidence of PVE. Recovery of some patients is possible with appropriate medical and surgical treatment, but more intense preventive measures are indicated.
  • Published In

  • Circulation  Journal
  • Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Ivert TSA; Dismukes WE; Cobbs CG
  • Start Page

  • 223
  • End Page

  • 232
  • Volume

  • 69
  • Issue

  • 2