Key Points:

Risk Factors for Infective Endocarditis:

  • Intravenous Drug Use: Direct introduction of pathogens into the bloodstream.
  • Rheumatic Heart Disease: Damaged heart valves predispose to bacterial colonization.
  • Prosthetic Heart Valves: Foreign materials in the heart increase infection risk.
  • Congenital Heart Disease: Structural abnormalities can facilitate bacterial adherence.
  • Recent Dental or Surgical Procedures: Potential sources of bacteremia.
  • Clinical Signs: Persistent fever, new or changing heart murmur, and peripheral signs such as splinter hemorrhages, Janeway lesions, Osler nodes, and Roth spots are indicative of endocarditis.

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