Variable Significance of Brain MRI Findings in Infective Endocarditis and Its Effect on Surgical Decisions

Tia Chakraborty, Eugene Scharf, Daniel DeSimone, Abdelghani El Rafei, Waleed Brinjikji, Larry M. Baddour, Walter Wilson, James M. Steckelberg, Jennifer E. Fugate, Eelco F.M. Wijdicks, Alejandro A. Rabinstein

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Objective: To determine how brain magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)findings impact clinical outcomes in patients with infective endocarditis (IE)and to propose a management algorithm for patients with neurologic symptoms who are candidates for valve surgery (VS). Patients and Methods: Data from our center were retrospectively reviewed for patients hospitalized with IE between January 1, 2007, and December 31, 2014. Outcomes were postoperative intracerebral hemorrhage (ICH), 6-month mortality, and functional outcome at last follow-up as described by the modified Rankin Scale (mRS)score. Good outcome was defined as an mRS score of 2 or less. Results: A total of 361 patients with IE were identified, including 127 patients (35%)who had MRI. One hundred twenty-six of 361 patients (35%)had neurologic symptoms, which prompted MRI in 79 of 127 patients (62%); 74 of 79 (94%)had acute or subacute MRI abnormalities. One patient with subarachnoid and multifocal ICH on MRI developed postoperative ICH. Patients with VS despite MRI abnormalities had lower 6-month mortality (odds ratio [OR], 0.17; 95% CI, 0.06-0.48; P<.001)and better functional outcome (OR, 4.43; 95% CI, 1.51-13.00; P=.005). Irrespective of VS, lobar or posterior fossa ICH on MRI was associated with 6-month mortality (OR, 3.58; 95% CI, 1.22-10.50; P=.02)and territorial ischemic stroke was inversely associated with good mRS (OR, 0.29; 95% CI, 0.13-0.66; P=.002). In neurologically asymptomatic patients who had VS, MRI findings did not impact 6-month mortality or functional outcomes. Conclusion: Magnetic resonance imaging detects a large number of abnormalities in patients with IE. Preoperative lobar hematoma and large territorial stroke determine outcome irrespective of VS. When indicated, VS increases the odds of a good outcome despite MRI abnormalities.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1024-1032
Number of pages9
JournalMayo Clinic proceedings
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2019

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Medicine


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