Bacterial endocarditis usually can be prevented by taking antibiotics immediately before and after procedures in which bacteria may be released into the bloodstream, such as:
- Dental cleaning
- Gallbladder or prostate surgery
- Some surgeries in the respiratory passageways, or the gastrointestinal or urinary tracts
- Tonsillectomy and adenoidectomy
People at risk for bacterial endocarditis are encouraged to practice good oral hygiene.
Once endocarditis is diagnosed, treatment usually consists of intravenous antibiotics. Recovery may take four to six weeks and there is a risk of permanent heart damage.
UCSF Health medical specialists have reviewed this information. It is for educational purposes only and is not intended to replace the advice of your doctor or other health care provider. We encourage you to discuss any questions or concerns you may have with your provider.
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