Here, we outline the case of a US Veteran’s Health Administration (VA) patient with a history of recent bioprosthetic aortic valve replacement (AVR) and recent intravenous drug use (IVDU) who was found to have three-valve infective endocarditis (IE) resulting in septic shock. We highlight this case because it represents an uncommon case of three-valve IE in the setting of recent bioprosthetic valve replacement and IVDU, and it raises the need for continued awareness of mental health and drug rehabilitation in the US military veteran population.
A 62-year-old gentleman with recent bioprosthetic AVR presented with dyspnoea and lower extremity oedema and was found to have a heart failure exacerbation. He developed sepsis and was found to have three-valve endocarditis, as well as aortic root abscess and pacemaker lead infection. He was treated with broad-spectrum antibiotics and evaluated for surgical intervention. After discussion with the surgical team, the patient decided not to pursue surgery due to prohibitively high perioperative mortality risk. The patient was transferred to hospice and expired within 2 weeks.
Three-valve IE is sparingly documented in published literature and can be difficult to treat. Providers must be cognizant of prosthetic valve endocarditis as an uncommon but known complication of valve replacement surgery. Intravenous drug use is a common risk factor for endocarditis and is prevalent in the US military veteran population. Prosthetic valve endocarditis should be treated with broad-spectrum antibiotics, and in general, if it leads to new significant valvular abnormalities, the valve should be replaced.

© The Author(s) 2019. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the European Society of Cardiology.