PRACTICE GUIDELINE
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Recommendations for the practice of echocardiography in infective endocarditis.

Echocardiography plays a key role in the assessment of infective endocarditis (IE). It is useful for the diagnosis of endocarditis, the assessment of the severity of the disease, the prediction of short- and long-term prognosis, the prediction of embolic events, and the follow-up of patients under specific antibiotic therapy. Echocardiography is also useful for the diagnosis and management of the complications of IE, helping the physician in decision-making, particularly when a surgical therapy is considered. Finally, intraoperative echocardiography must be performed in IE to help the surgeon in the assessment and management of patients with IE during surgery. The current 'recommendations for the practice of echocardiography in infective endocarditis' aims to provide both an updated summary concerning the value and limitations of echocardiography in IE, and clear and simple recommendations for the optimal use of both transthoracic and transoesophageal echocardiography in IE.

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