Prosthetic valve endocarditis in the ICU. Prognostic factors of overall survival in a series of 122 cases and consequences for treatment decision

Chest. 1995 Sep;108(3):688-94. doi: 10.1378/chest.108.3.688.


We carried out univariate and multivariate analysis of outcome among 122 patients with prosthetic valve endocarditis (PVE) admitted to our ICU between 1978 and 1992. The predominant pathogens were Staphylococcus aureus (33%), streptococci (20%), coagulase-negative staphylococci (12%), enterococci (10%), and Gram-negative bacilli (9%). At 4 months, overall survival was 66% (42 deaths). Staphylococcus aureus was the main predictor of death (75% vs 15% with other pathogens). In S aureus PVE, multivariate analysis identified the following predictors of death: prothrombin time < 30% (relative risk [RR]: 8.3), concomitant mediastinitis (RR: 4.9), heart failure (RR: 4.4), and septic shock (RR: 2.6). In PVE due to other pathogens, prothrombin time < 30% (RR: 32.26), renal failure (RR: 7.31), and heart failure (RR: 6.07) were associated with death. In S aureus PVE, survival was higher in patients who received medical-surgical therapy than in those who received medical therapy alone (9/20 [45%] vs 0/20) (p < 0.01). In PVE due to other pathogens, there was no difference in survival between patients who underwent prosthesis replacement (89%) and those who received only medical treatment (81%). Among the 65 patients who underwent heart surgery, the mortality rate and incidence of postoperative paravalvular leakage did not correlate with positive prosthesis cultures. We conclude that non-S aureus and uncomplicated PVE may be managed without valve replacement but that prompt surgical intervention should be required in all other situations.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Endocarditis, Bacterial / microbiology
  • Endocarditis, Bacterial / mortality*
  • Endocarditis, Bacterial / therapy
  • Female
  • Heart Valve Prosthesis / adverse effects*
  • Humans
  • Intensive Care Units
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Multivariate Analysis
  • Prognosis
  • Prosthesis-Related Infections / microbiology
  • Prosthesis-Related Infections / mortality*
  • Prosthesis-Related Infections / therapy
  • Staphylococcal Infections / etiology
  • Staphylococcal Infections / mortality
  • Staphylococcal Infections / therapy
  • Streptococcal Infections / etiology
  • Streptococcal Infections / mortality
  • Streptococcal Infections / therapy
  • Survival Rate
  • Treatment Outcome