Isolated pulmonary valve infective endocarditis in a middle aged man caused by Candida albicans: a case report

BMC Infect Dis. 2014 Oct 30:14:557. doi: 10.1186/s12879-014-0557-5.


Background: Pulmonary valve endocarditis without the involvement of other valves represents 1.5-2% of all cases of infective endocarditis. Isolated pulmonary valve endocarditis caused by Candida is extremely rare with only one reported case in the literature and none reported in the United States. Guidelines for management of Candida endocarditis recommend a combination of medical and surgical therapy.

Case presentation: A 61-year-old homeless male presented with fever, cough and shortness of breath. He was urgently intubated for hypoxia. He was initially diagnosed with pneumonia but did not improve with empiric antibacterial therapy. Candida species were isolated from bronchoalveolar lavage fluid and the patient eventually developed persistent C. albicans bloodstream infection. On further workup he was found to have infective endocarditis with a large vegetation across the pulmonary valve. No other valves were involved. He was treated with intravenous antifungal therapy for eight weeks. Valvular surgery was not performed. Follow up echocardiography after completion of therapy did not show any vegetations and the patient clinically improved.

Conclusion: This is the second reported case of isolated pulmonary valve endocarditis caused by Candida and the first to be successfully managed with antifungal therapy alone. Pulmonary valve endocarditis should be considered in cases of pneumonia with Candida and persistent fungemia. While surgery should be considered in all cases of Candida endocarditis, cure may be achieved with antifungal therapy alone.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Antifungal Agents / therapeutic use
  • Candida albicans / isolation & purification*
  • Candidiasis / diagnosis*
  • Candidiasis / drug therapy
  • Candidiasis / microbiology
  • Endocarditis / diagnosis*
  • Endocarditis / drug therapy
  • Endocarditis / microbiology
  • Fungemia / diagnosis*
  • Fungemia / drug therapy
  • Fungemia / microbiology
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Pulmonary Valve / microbiology*
  • Treatment Outcome


  • Antifungal Agents