Echocardiographic diagnosis of ruptured aortic valve leaflet in bacterial endocarditis.
Aortic valve rupture, secondary to aortic valve endocarditis, was diagnosed echocardiographically and closely followed preoperatively. The ruptured left coronary cusp of the aortic valve was seen as dense irregular echoes, located anteriorly during ventricular diastole, and protruding into the left ventricular outflow tract in an otherwise normally appearing aortic valve. These echocardiographic findings, when correlated with changes in the clinical status of the patient, prompted immediate cardiac catheterization and aortic valve replacement. Early echocardiographic detection of abnormal aortic cusps and variation from normal aortic root echo features should alert the physician to proceed to cardiac catheterization, and aortic valve replacement if necessary.
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