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The Collaborative International Dictionary

Endocarditis \En`do*car*di"tis\, n. [NL. See -itis.] (Med.) Inflammation of the endocardium. [1913 Webster] ||


n. (context pathology cardiology English) An inflammation of the endocardium and possibly the heart valves.


n. inflammation of the endocardium and heart valves


Endocarditis is an inflammation of the inner layer of the heart, the endocardium. It usually involves the heart valves. Other structures that may be involved include the interventricular septum, the chordae tendineae, the mural endocardium, or the surfaces of intracardiac devices. Endocarditis is characterized by lesions, known as vegetations, which is a mass of platelets, fibrin, microcolonies of microorganisms, and scant inflammatory cells. In the subacute form of infective endocarditis, the vegetation may also include a center of granulomatous tissue, which may fibrose or calcify.

There are several ways to classify endocarditis. The simplest classification is based on cause: either infective or non-infective, depending on whether a microorganism is the source of the inflammation or not. Regardless, the diagnosis of endocarditis is based on clinical features, investigations such as an echocardiogram, and blood cultures demonstrating the presence of endocarditis-causing microorganisms. Signs and symptoms include: fever, chills, sweating, malaise, weakness, anorexia, weight loss, splenomegaly, flu-like feeling, cardiac murmur, heart failure, petechia of anterior trunk, Janeway's lesions, etc.

Usage examples of "endocarditis".

She was also suffering from hepatomegaly, uremia, endocarditis, and a host of other serious ailments.

Dead of kidney failure, thrombocytopenia, and endocarditis, toward the end of July, as the cool dawn of another hot blue-gray day broke on the ornamental roof-level brickwork opposite St.