Infective endocarditis, or IE, comes in two varieties. The first is acute IE. This develops quickly and could be fatal in a matter of days. Subacute or chronic IE (or subacute bacterial endocarditis) develops gradually over a period of weeks to many months. Endocarditis symptoms vary from person to person and depend on the type of bacteria as well as the presence of other heart conditions.
The following are typical signs of endocarditis:
- Aching muscles and joints
- When breathing, your chest hurts
- Flu-like signs include chills and a fever
- Sweats at night
- Breathing difficulty
- Swollen ankles, legs, or stomach
- A different or new whooshing in the heart (murmur)
Symptoms of endocarditis that are less typical include:
- Unaccounted-for weight loss
- Urine with blood in it
- Under the left rib cage, a soreness (spleen)
- On the palms of the hands or the bottoms of the feet, there are flat, painless red, purple, or brown blotches (Janeway lesions)
- Hyperpigmented (darkened) skin patches or painful red, purple, or purple lumps on the ends of the fingers or toes (Osler nodes)
- Petechiae, which are tiny purple, red, or brown spots that appear on the skin, the whites of the eyes, or the inside of the mouth.
What to Do if You Exhibit Heart Infection Symptoms?
It is usually recommended to call a doctor if chest discomfort develops quickly, especially if anti-inflammatory medication does not relieve symptoms. Call your doctor if there is pain that begins with nausea, vomiting, or sweating, which then extends to the arms, back, neck, or jaw. Check for tightness or heaviness in the chest, breathing difficulties or changes in breathing rate, and/or blue nails or lips.
Chest pain can occasionally be life-threatening if it is severe and lasts longer than 15 minutes. This is why it shouldn’t be disregarded.
One should also be cautious if they are using cardiovascular implantable devices as infections can originate from them, too. Examples of these devices are pacemaker and coronary artery stent.
How do I Know if Chest Pain is Serious?
A heart attack may be indicated by pain that is acute or that feels as though it is squeezing the chest. Another indication of acute chest pain is trouble breathing. People who experience these symptoms should find a doctor right away.
When you take care of someone with heart disease, keep an eye on their symptoms and learn when it’s time to call the doctor. If they show any of these above signs or heart infection symptoms, get in touch with the doctor’s office right away.
Learn more about Heart Infections here.