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Concurrent cardiac and central nervous system complications of acute infective endocarditis: case report



Background:

Cerebral mycotic aneurysms represent a rare but life-threatening complication of infective endocarditis (IE), with high mortality rate when ruptured. Due to the lack of randomized controlled trials, management of infectious aneurysms complicating endocarditis remains a controversial topic.


Case summary:

We describe a case of Streptococcus salivarius bicuspid aortic and mitral valve endocarditis with concurrent spontaneous mycotic aneurysm rupture and acute subarachnoid haemorrhage (SAH). A 40-year-old man with history of intravenous drug abuse presented to our emergency department with altered mental status and dyspnoea. Echocardiography documented large vegetations on a bicuspid aortic valve and on the mitral valve, causing acute severe aortic and mitral regurgitation. Brain computed tomography imaging documented a ruptured fusiform aneurysm in a distal branch of the right middle cerebral artery causing acute SAH and acute obstructive hydrocephalus. An external ventricular drain was emergently placed and endovascular embolization of the aneurysm was achieved with deployment of six coils. Blood cultures grew S. salivarius and antibiotic therapy according to microbiological sensitivities was administered. Hospital stay was complicated by acute heart failure, ST-elevation myocardial infarction, conduction disturbances, cerebral vasospasm, recurrent mycotic aneurysm rupture, and death.


Discussion:

Clinicians should be mindful of the rare, potentially severe complication of IE with cerebral mycotic aneurysms to enable prompt treatment. Generally, central nervous system procedures are performed prior to cardiac surgical management of IE, since cardiopulmonary bypass may exacerbate cerebral haemorrhage, ischaemic damage, and oedema in areas of blood-brain barrier disruption. A multidisciplinary collaboration is crucial for optimal patient management.


Keywords:

Acute subarachnoid haemorrhage; Bicuspid aortic valve; Case report; Infective endocarditis; Mycotic aneurysm; ST-elevation myocardial infarction; Streptococcus salivarius.



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