1) Department of Medicine A, Charles Nicolle Hospital, Faculty of Medicine, Tunis, University of Tunis El Manar, Tunisia.
2) Laboratory of Renal Pathology LR00SP01, Charles Nicolle Hospital, Tunis-Tunisia (3) Faculty of Medicine, Tunis, University of Tunis El Manar, Tunisia.
Disclosure: The author has declared no conflicts of interest.
Received: 21.01.16 Accepted: 28.03.16
Endocarditis is one of the most prevalent forms of cardiac involvement in patients with lupus, as it is considered as one a life-threatening complication. Libman-Sacks endocarditis is common. Infective endocarditis can also cause complications within immunocompromised patients.
The aim of this study is to determine particularities of endocarditis in patients with lupus and to look for distinguishing features between infectious or immunological origin. A retrospective study was conducted on patients with lupus presenting endocarditis. Lupus was diagnosed according to the American college of rheumatology criteria. The diagnosis of endocarditis was made based on the modified Duke criteria.
The present case report studies seven cases of endocarditis. Six of these patients are women and the other one is a man. They are aged meanly of 29.4 years (extremes: 20-36). Fever was present in all the cases with a new cardiac murmur in six cases and a modification of its intensity in one case. Biologic inflammatory syndrome was present in six cases. Cardiac ultrasound performed in six cases made the diagnosis of endocarditis which involved the left heart valves in five cases and the right heart valves in one case. Valvular insufficiency was identified in six patients. The valve involvement was mitral in two cases, mitro-aortic in two others, aortic in the fifth one and tricuspid in the sixth one. Endocarditis was infectious in 4 cases, thanks to positive blood culture. The germs identified were gram negative bacilli in two cases, anaerobic organism in one case and gram positive cocci in one case. Candida albicans was isolated in one case. Libman-Sacks endocarditis was objectified in three cases. A combination of Libman-Sacks endocarditis with infectious endocarditis was diagnosed in one case. The treatment consisted of antibiotics in four cases with surgery in two cases. The outcome was favorable in five cases and fatal in the two others.
Endocarditis in lupus can be infectious or Libman-Sacks endocarditis. These two conditions share several clinical features. The only distinctive argument remains positive blood culture. The treatment should be initiated as early as possible to limit the valve damage and improve the outcome.
Keywords: Systemic lupus erythematosus, infectious endocarditis, Libman-Sacks endocarditis
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