What is the role of cardiac studies in the workup of bacterial sepsis?

Updated: Feb 05, 2019
  • Author: Amber Mahmood Bokhari, MBBS; Chief Editor: Michael Stuart Bronze, MD  more...
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Answer

If acute MI is likely, perform electrocardiography (ECG) and obtain cardiac enzyme levels. Remember that certain patients may present with a silent, asymptomatic MI, which should be included in the differential diagnosis of otherwise unexplained fever, leukocytosis, and hypotension. Silent MIs are common in elderly patients and in those who have recent undergone abdominal or pelvic surgical procedures. They are also common in individuals with alcoholism, diabetes, and uremic conditions.

The following cardiac studies may be useful if cardiac involvement or disease is suspected as a cause or complication of infection:

  • Electrocardiography (ECG) to evaluate for conduction abnormalities or delays or arrhythmias
  • Cardiac enzyme levels
  • Echocardiography to evaluate for structural heart disease

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