Q fever myocarditis is a rare disease manifestation of Q fever infection caused by Coxiella burnetii. It is associated with significant morbidity and mortality if left untreated. Prior studies have reported myocarditis in patients with acute Q fever. We present the first case of chronic myocarditis in an end-stage heart failure patient with chronic Q fever infection.
A 69-year-old male was admitted with dyspnea on exertion, hypotension and bilateral lower extremity edema for a few months. He has a past medical history of ischemic cardiomyopathy with left ventricular ejection fraction of 25%, implantable cardioverter defibrillator in place, bioprosthetic aortic valve and mitral valve replacement. He continued to have shortness of breath despite diuresis along with low grade fevers. Initial infectious work up came back negative. On further questioning, the patient was found to have close contact with farm animals and the recurrent fevers prompted the work-up for Q fever. Q fever serologies and cardiac positron emission tomography confirmed the diagnosis of chronic Q fever myocarditis. He was then successfully treated with doxycycline and hydroxychloroquine for 18 mo.
Chronic Q fever myocarditis, if left untreated, carries a poor prognosis. It should be kept in differentials, especially in patients with recurrent fevers and contact with farm animals.
Case report; Chronic Q fever; Coxiella burnetii; Farm animals; Heart failure; Myocarditis.