Search the Health Library
Get the facts on diseases, conditions, tests and procedures.
I Want To...
I Want To...
Find Research Faculty
Enter the last name, specialty or keyword for your search below.
School of Medicine
Conditions We Treat: Endocarditis
Endocarditis is a heart valve infection. In people susceptible to endocarditis, infection elsewhere in the body may travel through the bloodstream and settle in the heart valves, causing potentially fatal damage. Early treatment with antibiotics is critical.
Endocarditis: What You Need to Know
- You are at risk for endocarditis if you have certain congenital heart conditions including heart valve defects.
- Certain procedures, such as surgery and dental work, as well as injectable drugs, ports, IVs and catheters, have potential for allowing dangerous microbes to travel to the heart. You may be advised to take antibiotics beforehand.
- If you have symptoms of endocarditis, immediate attention is necessary. Treatment is usually a long course of antibiotics. If the infection is well advanced, surgery may be necessary to repair a valve.
Why choose Johns Hopkins Heart and Vascular Institute for treatment of endocarditis?
Our cardiologists treat endocarditis, but prefer to help avoid it altogether by teaching prevention techniques to people at risk.
When a heart valve is damaged by endocarditis, Johns Hopkins surgeons offer the least invasive treatment necessary for repair or replacement.