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JAMA. 2003 Apr 16;289(15):1933-40.

Complicated left-sided native valve endocarditis in adults: risk classification for mortality.

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  • 1Infectious Disease Section, Tulane University School of Medicine, New Orleans, La, USA.



Complicated left-sided native valve endocarditis causes significant morbidity and mortality in adults. Lack of valid data regarding estimation of prognosis makes management of this condition difficult.


To derive and externally validate a prognostic classification system for adults with complicated left-sided native valve endocarditis.Design, Setting, and


Retrospective observational cohort study conducted from January 1990 to January 2000 at 7 Connecticut hospitals among 513 patients older than 16 years who experienced complicated left-sided native valve endocarditis and who were divided into derivation (n = 259) and validation (n = 254) cohorts.


All-cause mortality at 6 months after baseline.


In the derivation and validation cohorts, the 6-month mortality rates were 25% and 26%, respectively. Five baseline features were independently associated with 6-month mortality (comorbidity [P =.03], abnormal mental status [P =.02], moderate to severe congestive heart failure [P =.01], bacterial etiology other than viridans streptococci [P<.001 except Staphylococcus aureus, P =.004], and medical therapy without valve surgery [P =.002]) and were used to create a prognostic classification system. In the derivation cohort, patients were classified into 4 groups with increasing risk for 6-month mortality: 5%, 15%, 31%, and 59% (P<.001). In the validation cohort, a similar risk among the 4 groups was observed: 7%, 19%, 32%, and 69% (P<.001).


Adults with complicated left-sided native valve endocarditis can be accurately risk stratified using baseline features into 4 groups of prognostic severity. This prognostic classification system might be useful for facilitating management decisions.

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