Medical Surgical Endocarditis #5

Question

A nurse performing triage on a client suspects the client of having endocarditis. Which symptom(s) support this suspicion? Select all that apply.

Answers

  1. Recent stomach virus
    • Rationale:

      This answer is not correct because a recent virus does not indicate a risk for bacterial endocarditis. However, inadequate antibiotic treatment of strep (bacterial) infections can place clients at risk for rheumatic fever, which places the client at risk for endocarditis. Symptoms of bacterial (infective) endocarditis include chest discomfort with breathing, night sweats, fever, chills, and aching joints and muscles.

  2. Chest discomfort with breathing
    • Rationale:

      This answer is correct because symptoms of bacterial (infective) endocarditis include chest discomfort with breathing, night sweats, fever, chills, and aching joints and muscles. Due to the location of the infection, breathing can cause chest pain. Bacterial (infective) endocarditis is an infection that can be caused by bacteria which enters the bloodstream and attaches itself to the heart valve or cardiac blood vessel. This vegetation which grows within the heart valve or vessel and can result in serious heart damage or death related to emboli.

  3. Night sweats
    • Rationale:

      This answer is correct because symptoms of bacterial (infective) endocarditis include night sweats, chest discomfort with breathing, fever, chills, and aching joints and muscles. Bacterial (infective) endocarditis is an infection that can be caused by bacteria which enters the bloodstream and attaches itself to the heart valve or cardiac blood vessel.

  4. Aching muscles and joints
    • Rationale:

      This answer is correct because symptoms of bacterial (infective) endocarditis include aching joints and muscles, fever, chills, night sweats, and chest discomfort with breathing. It is an infectious process causing an inflammatory process in the body, leading to flu-like symptoms such as aching joints and muscles.

  5. Fever and chills
    • Rationale:

      This answer is correct because symptoms of bacterial (infective) endocarditis include fever, chills, night sweats, chest discomfort with breathing, and aching joints and muscles. It is an infectious process causing an inflammatory process in the body, leading to fever and chills.

Overview

Symptoms of bacterial (infective) endocarditis include chest discomfort with breathing, night sweats, fever, chills, and aching joints and muscles.

Explanation

Learning Outcomes

Bacterial (infective) endocarditis is an infection that can be caused by bacteria which enters the bloodstream and attaches itself to the heart valve or cardiac blood vessel. This vegetation which grows within the heart valve or vessel and can result in serious heart damage or death related to emboli. This is due to the risk of bacteria, particularly staph, strep, and enterococcus bacteria, that can enter the bloodstream. Since clients with a mechanical valve prosthesis is at an increased risk, the client should be taught infection prevention (handwashing, avoidance of sick individuals and taking prophylactic antibiotics prior to any invasive procedure, including dental procedures). Additionally, inadequate antibiotic treatment of strep infections can place clients at risk for rheumatic fever, which places the client at risk for endocarditis. Symptoms of bacterial (infective) endocarditis include chest discomfort with breathing, night sweats, fever, chills, and aching joints and muscles.

Test Taking Tip

Noting that this condition has a suffix of “-itis” is important. Then understanding the symptoms associated with an infectious process that affects the heart and valves, will help answer this question.

Video Rationale