Splenic rupture as a presenting feature of endocarditis

James Roger Winearls, Steven McGloughlin, John F Fraser
European Journal of Cardio-thoracic Surgery 2009, 35 (4): 737-9
We describe the first case of infective endocarditis presenting with spontaneous splenic rupture. Our patient, a known intravenous drug user presented with hypovolaemic shock secondary to splenic rupture. The patient was resuscitated and underwent an emergency splenectomy. Subsequent clinical examination revealed a systolic murmur and a diagnosis of mitral valve infective endocarditis was made after echocardiography. Splenic tissue, blood cultures and mitral valve tissue all cultured Enterococcus faecalis. The patient had a successful mitral valve replacement and was discharged home after 44 days. To our knowledge this is the first reported case of enterococcal endocarditis presenting with splenic rupture. This case highlights the need to consider endocarditis in spontaneous splenic rupture particularly in those patients in a high risk group, such as IV drug users, especially if they lack a clear history of trauma.

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