JOURNAL ARTICLE
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[Diagnosis and treatment of infective endocarditis. Current ESC guidelines].

Herz 2010 December
To account for the current evidence in the field of infective endocarditis and to harmonize deviant national guidelines, in 2009 the European Society of Cardiology published novel recommendations on the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of infective endocarditis.The most important changes can be found concerning antimicrobial prophylaxis for endocarditis, the antimicrobial treatment of endocarditis caused by S. aureus and the indications for surgical treatment.Due to the weak evidence about prophylactic administration of antibiotics before procedures at risk for bacteraemia to prevent infective endocarditis, the novel guidelines recommend prophylaxis only in patients with the highest risk for infection and lethal course of endocarditis. These are patients with prosthetic valves or prosthetic material used for cardiac repair, patients with previous endocarditis and patients with congenital heart disease. A narrow definition of procedures at risk was proposed only including dental procedures requiring manipulation of the gingival or periapical region of teeth.For endocarditis caused by S. aureus an additional gentamicin administration was previously recommended but this is now seen only as optional due to its nephrotoxicity. In methicillin-resistant strains daptomycin is a possible alternative to vancomycin. In strains susceptible to methicillin, beta-lactamic antibiotics were definitively preferred than the usage of vancomycin due to better outcome. The current guidelines recommend definitive timing and risk constellations for surgical treatment of infective endocarditis. For example, cardiac shock due to valvular lesions refractory to medical treatment should give rise to an emergency intervention within 24 h. Other indication groups contain uncontrolled infection and prevention of embolism and indications were defined as urgent or elective depending on the clinical situation.

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