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Original research article
Infective endocarditis in adults with congenital heart disease remains a lethal disease


Objective Infective endocarditis (IE) is associated with significant morbidity and mortality. Patients with adult congenital heart disease (ACHD) have an increased risk of developing IE. The aim of this study is to describe the incidence, predictors of outcome and mortality associated with IE in ACHD in a contemporary cohort.

Methods All episodes of IE in adults with congenital heart disease referred to our tertiary centre between 1999 and 2013 were included in the study. Patients were identified from the hospital database. The diagnosis of endocarditis was established according to the modified Duke criteria. The primary endpoint of the study was endocarditis-associated mortality.

Results There were 164 episodes of IE in 144 patients (male 102, 70.8%). Mean age at presentation was 32.3±22.7 years. Out of these, 43% had a simple, 23% a moderate and 32% a complex lesion. It was at least the second bout of IE in 37 episodes (23%). A predisposing event could be identified in only 26.2% of episodes. Surgical intervention during the same admission was performed in 61 episodes (37.2%). During a median follow-up of 6.7 years (IQR 2.9–11.4), 28 (19.4%) patients died. Out of these, 10 deaths were related to IE (IE mortality 6.9%). On unvariate regression analysis, the development of an abscess (OR: 7.23; 95% CI 1.81 to 28.94, p<0.01) and age (OR: 1.05; 95% CI 1.01 to 1.10, p=0.03) were the only predictors of IE-associated mortality. There was no increase in IE cases at our centre during the period of the study.

Conclusions IE-associated morbidity and mortality in a contemporary cohort of ACHD patients is still high in the current era.

  • infective endocarditis
  • adult congenital heart disease

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