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ORIGINAL HYPOTHESES
Year : 2012  |  Volume : 3  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 76-78

Antibiotic prophylaxis in infective endocarditis: Use or abuse?


Department of Dental Health Services, Deen Dayal Upadhaya Hospital, Shimla, Himachal Pradesh, India

Correspondence Address:
Nisha Thakur
Room No-30, Dental OPD, Deen Dayal Upadhaya Hospital, Shimla, Himachal Pradesh
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/2155-8213.100393

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Introduction: The American Heart Association (AHA) recommendations for antimicrobial prophylaxis for infective endocarditis (IE) are controversial. According to the new guidelines released by the AHA now, the only patients to receive antibiotics will be those at highest risk, i.e. those with a prosthetic heart valve, a history of endocarditis, certain forms of congenital heart disease or valvulopathy after heart transplantation, and only before certain dental procedures. Unfortunately, these guidelines are still based largely on expert opinion, with very little hard evidence to show that antibiotic therapy actually prevents IE. The Hypothesis: The reported incidence of bacteremia during dental intervention ranges from 10% to 100% and, with daily brushing and flossing, from 20% to 68%. Because bacteremia also occurs during brushing and flossing of teeth, why give prophylaxis just for dental procedures? Moreover, the risks of causing adverse or anaphylactic reactions from antibiotics as well as contributing to the nationwide antibiotic resistance problem are issues not to be taken lightly. Evaluation of the Hypothesis: The hypothesis discusses the AHA recommendations for antimicrobial prophylaxis for IE, indicating some inherent limitations associated with it, and stresses upon the fact that these recommendation should also be updated, if not completely changed, to cope up with the advancements in the proper treatment plan.


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