• Nosocomial endocarditis occurred in 22 patients who were discharged from a university hospital, a veterans' hospital, and a community hospital during the period of January 1976 to December 1985. Nosocomial episodes were 14.3% of the total endocarditis cases seen. Fourteen (63.6%) of 22 nosocomial endocarditis episodes occurred in patients over the age of 60 years, compared with 39 (29.5%) of 132 episodes of community-acquired endocarditis during the same period. Nosocomial endocarditis was due predominantly to Staphylococcus aureus or coagulase-negative staphylococci (77.4%) and, less often, to streptococci (13.6%). Intravascular devices were the source of bacteremia in ten (45.5%) of the nosocomial endocarditis episodes. The overall mortality rate was 40.9%, 50% in patients over the age of 60 years. Improved care of intravascular devices or prophylaxis before procedures could probably have prevented endocarditis in 12 of the 22 patients.
(Arch Intern Med 1988;148:1601-1603)