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Abstract

In recent years, transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR) has emerged as a revolutionary alternative for surgical aortic valve replacement (SAVR) for the treatment of severe symptomatic aortic stenosis in patients at high risk for surgery. Prosthetic aortic valve endocarditis is a serious complication after SAVR with high morbidity and mortality. Although numerous TAVR procedures have been performed worldwide, infective endocarditis (IE) after TAVR was reported in the literature in few cases only and in 0% to 2.3% of patients enrolled in large TAVR cohorts. Our aim was to review the literature for IE following TAVR and to discuss the diagnostic and management strategies of this rare complication. Ten case reports of IE after TAVR were identified, 8 of which were published as case reports and 2 of which were presented in congresses. Infective endocarditis occurred in a mean time period of 186 days (median, 90 days) after TAVR. Most cases were characterized by fever and elevated inflammatory markers. Infective endocarditis after TAVR shared some common characteristics with IE after SAVR, yet it has some unique features. Echocardiographic findings included leaflet vegetations, severe mitral regurgitation with rupture of the anterior leaflet, and left ventricle outflow tract to left atrium fistula. Bacteriologic findings included several atypical bacteria or fungi. Cases of IE were managed either conservatively by antibiotics and/or using surgery, and the overall prognosis was poor. Infective endocarditis after TAVR deserves prompt diagnosis and treatment. Until further evidence is present, IE after TAVR should be managed according to SAVR guidelines with modifications as needed on a case-by-case basis.

The authors have no funding, financial relationships, or conflicts of interest to disclose.