Table 6.5 Summary: Clinical evaluation of horses with endocarditis


History

Very uncommon

Usually chronic history of malaise

Weight loss

Clinical findings

+/- cardiac murmur

+/- signs of cardiac disease

+/- pyrexia

signs of systemic illness

Evaluation of significance

All cases are significant

Most cases are fatal

Prognosis depends on degree of damage to valve and resultant valvular insufficiency

Identify arrhythmias which may affect treatment and prognosis

Early diagnosis and intensive treatment with appropriate antibiotic regime required to have any hope of successful treatment

Helpful diagnostic tests

Echocardiography

Plasma fibrinogen (usually very high)

Haematology (often a neutrophilia and left shift)

Blood culture and antibiotic sensitivity of isolates

ECG if arrhythmia present