Acute Endocarditis in Intravenous Drug Users: A Case Report and Literature Review.

Acute endocarditis in intravenous drug users: a case report and literature review.

J Community Hosp Intern Med Perspect. 2012; 2(1):
Ji Y, Kujtan L, Kershner D

Infective endocarditis (IE) is a notorious complication of intravenous drug use (IDU). It typically affects the cardiac valves. Among these, the tricuspid is the most common affected valve, although the mitral and/or aortic valves can also be involved. Methicillin sensitive staphylococcus aureus (MSSA) is the most common etiological microbial agent of IE in IDU. Once IE is diagnosed, antibiotic treatment should start immediately after blood cultures have been obtained. However, IE in this particular patient population is more difficult to treat, and has a high recurrence rate compared to other patient populations, because of continuing IDU and medical non-compliance. Here, we present an interesting case of IE in a relatively young IDU patient with severe MSSA positive sepsis. The updated diagnostic and treatment strategies, as well as the ethical issues involved in the management of IE patients in the setting of current active IDU will also be discussed. HubMed – drug

Antimicrobial stewardship: attempting to preserve a strategic resource.

J Community Hosp Intern Med Perspect. 2011; 1(2):
Van Schooneveld T

Antimicrobials hold a unique place in our drug armamentarium. Unfortunately the increase in resistance among both gram-positive and gram-negative pathogens coupled with a lack of new antimicrobial agents is threatening our ability to treat infections. Antimicrobial use is the driving force behind this rise in resistance and much of this use is suboptimal. Antimicrobial stewardship programs (ASP) have been advocated as a strategy to improve antimicrobial use. The goals of ASP are to improve patient outcomes while minimizing toxicity and selection for resistant strains by assisting in the selection of the correct agent, right dose, and best duration. Two major strategies for ASP exist: restriction/pre-authorization that controls use at the time of ordering and audit and feedback that reviews ordered antimicrobials and makes suggestions for improvement. Both strategies have some limitations, but have been effective at achieving stewardship goals. Other supplemental strategies such as education, clinical prediction rules, biomarkers, clinical decision support software, and institutional guidelines have been effective at improving antimicrobial use. The most effective antimicrobial stewardship programs have employed multiple strategies to impact antimicrobial use. Using these strategies stewardship programs have been able to decrease antimicrobial use, the spread of resistant pathogens, the incidence of C. difficile infection, pharmacy costs, and improved patient outcomes. HubMed – drug

Drag Reaction with Eosinophilia and Systemic Symptoms (DRESS) Syndrome.

J Clin Aesthet Dermatol. 2013 Jun; 6(6): 31-7
Choudhary S, McLeod M, Torchia D, Romanelli P

Drug rash with eosinophilia and systemic symptoms syndrome is a severe idiosyncratic drug reaction with a long latency period. It has been described using many terms; however, drug rash with eosinophilia and systemic symptoms syndrome appears to be the most appropriate. This syndrome causes a diverse array of clinical symptoms, anywhere from 2 to 8 weeks after initiating the offending drug. Standardized criteria for the diagnosis have been developed; however, their utility remains to be validated. Unfortunately, the management of drug rash with eosinophilia and systemic symptoms syndrome is not well supported by strong evidence-based data. HubMed – drug

Familial hypercholesterolemia and the atherosclerotic disease.

Korean Circ J. 2013 Jun; 43(6): 363-7
Kim YR, Han KH

Familial hypercholesterolemia (FH) is associated with premature atherosclerotic cardiovascular diseases, and is inherited as an autosomal dominant trait. The prevalence of heterozygous FH is one in five hundred people. Owing to dysfunctional low density lipoprotein (LDL) receptors due to genetic mutations, serum low density lipoprotein-cholesterol (LDL-C) levels are considerably increased from birth. FH is clinically diagnosed by confirmation of family history and characteristic findings such as tendon xanthoma or xanthelasma. Thus, clinical concern and suspicion are important for early diagnosis of the disease. Current guidelines recommend lowering LDL-C concentration to at least 50% from baseline. Statins are shown to lower LDL-C levels with high safety, and thus, have been the drug of choice. However, it is difficult to achieve an ideal level of LDL-C with a single statin therapy in the majority of FH patients. Alternatively, lipid lowering combination therapy with the recently-introduced ezetimibe has shown more encouraging results. HubMed – drug