There are 4 valves in the heart. These valves help the blood to flow through the heart, lungs, and throughout the body. When a person has bacterial endocarditis, these valves are not able to function properly. In this case, the heart has to work harder to keep the blood flowing in the body.

Sometimes the heart is unable to pump enough blood. Endocarditis is a serious condition. Due to which many times it can lead to death. So today in this article, we will understand the causes of bacterial endocarditis and all the things related to it.

Causes of bacterial endocarditis The bacteria attach to cells and other things in the blood. They can travel to other parts of the body and cause problems. Bacterial endocarditis in adults is more common in men than in women.

Bacterial endocarditis & Its Symptoms

If there is no problem related to heart, then its risk is very less. It is common in people who have any heart related problems or any risk factors.

In some caseas, its symptoms start appearing suddenly and can be severe. This is called acute bacterial endocarditis. If in other cases it is gradual and its symptoms are severe then it is called subacute bacterial endocarditis.

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What are the symptoms of endocarditis? (Symptoms of Bacterial Endocarditis)

Symptoms of bacterial endocarditis appear suddenly and may be severe or they may develop slowly and become less severe. Its symptoms include the following.

  • fever and chills
  • night sweats
  • fatigue
  • Muscle and joint pain
  • shortness of breath during activity
  • shortness of breath while lying down
  • cough problem
  • Nausea
  • vomiting
  • headache
  • blood in urine
  • Swelling in the toes, legs, and lower abdomen
  • gaining weight
  • Abnormal skin changes such as red bumps on the fingers and toes
  • Red spots on the skin, inside the eyes and mouth

Read more: heart-blockage symptoms.

What are the causes of endocarditis? (Bacterial Endocarditis Causes)

The causes of bacterial endocarditis are bacteria. Explain that some types of bacteria live normally in the body. They are found in the mouth, respiratory system, skin and digestive tract. Sometimes these bacteria reach the bloodstream.

This can happen after a medical dental procedure. Due to which there is a cut in the skin or tissues. Due to which the bacteria move into the bloodstream and try to settle in the heart lining or heart valve. The most common causes of bacteria entering the blood are:

  • surgery to remove tonsils
  • Medical procedures such as examination of the airways through a bronchoscope
  • Respiratory, Gastrointestinal and Urinary Tract Surgeries

Causes of bacterial endocarditis Not all types of bacteria, but two types of bacteria mostly cause bacterial endocarditis. They are Staphylococci (staph) and Streptococci (strep).

If a person has any problem related to heart valve, then the risk of bacterial endocarditis increases. This gives bacteria an easy place to live and grow. If there is no heart related disease, then its risk is very less. After knowing the causes of bacterial endocarditis, know its risk factors.

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Who is at higher risk of getting bacterial endocarditis? (endocarditis risk factors)

Bacterial endocarditis & Its Symptoms

The risk of developing it increases with low heart conditions and these conditions give rise to the causes of bacterial endocarditis.

  • Artificial heart valve replacement
  • Have had a bacterial endocarditis infection in the past
  • Have congenital heart disease
  • Heart valves not working properly after heart transplant
  • Intravenous drug use
  • Hemodialysis for kidney failure
  • Heart valve disease such as a leaking or narrowing valve
  • Rheumatic heart disease caused by strep bacteria
  • not maintaining dental hygiene
  • week immune system

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How is endocarditis diagnosed? (Endocarditis Diagnosis)

The doctor will ask about symptoms and medical history, and they will do some physical exams. You may need to have some tests. In which the following are included.


Through this test, along with finding out the structure of the heart, how it is working can also be found out. Blood flow is ascertained by this test.

In this, a moving picture of the heart and heart valves is taken through sound waves. The doctor may use different types of echocardiograms to diagnose the causes of bacterial endocarditis and endocarditis.

Complete blood count

Through this test, the doctor finds out about all the types of cells present in the blood. Which includes red blood cells, white blood cells and platelets.

If the blood test shows that there are many white blood cells in the patient's blood, it can be a sign of infection. That is, white blood cells can be caused by bacterial endocarditis.

Blood Culture

Through this test, the doctor will try to find out about infection or any kind of germ in the blood. Based on the results of the blood culture test, the doctor will provide a combination of antibiotic to antibiotic. Apart from this some tests are also done:

Can bacterial endocarditis be prevented? (Prevention tips for Endocarditis)

Bacterial endocarditis cannot be completely prevented, but some tips can help. which are the following.

  • If you have a strep infection, get it treated immediately. This can prevent rheumatic heart disease from occurring.
  • The risk of this disease can be reduced by not using IV drugs.
  • The risk can also be reduced by keeping the mouth clean and hygienic.
  • Use antibiotics after medical or dental procedures.
  • Doing this reduces the risk of endocarditis if there is an artificial heart valve.
  • In case of persistent fever, feeling tired without any reason, any type of skin infection, not recovering well from injury, contact the doctor immediately.

Hope you liked this article and got important information related to the causes of bacterial endocarditis. Please consult an expert for more information.


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