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This infection is usually treated with strong antibiotics, medicines that fight germs like bacteria.

Endocarditis Treatment Options

Your child might need to stay in the hospital for a while and get antibiotics through a vein (intravenously, or by IV). Most likely they will need to continue taking antibiotics for several weeks, even after they go home. If the infection does not go away, sometimes surgery is necessary to remove the infection.

If the infection has seriously damaged your child’s heart valves, they might need other treatment, like surgery to repair or replace the valves.

Preventive Steps

Some people who are at risk for endocarditis may need to take steps to prevent it. This may include some children who were born with heart defects, have had heart surgery or have had endocarditis before.

Talk with your doctor about whether your child needs to take any special steps for prevention.

The main steps are to take good care of their teeth and gums and, in some cases, to take antibiotics before having dental work. The mouth is one place where germs may enter the bloodstream.

It’s important to watch for signs of infection, too. The best way to prevent complications is to get treatment for endocarditis early.

Who Treats This at Seattle Children's?

Should your child see a doctor?

Find out by selecting your child’s symptom or health condition in the list below:

Spring 2014: Good Growing Newsletter

In This Issue

  • Cold Water Shock Can Quickly Cause Drowning
  • E-Cigs Are Addictive and Harmful
  • Bystanders Can Intervene to Stop Bullying

Download Spring 2014 (PDF)