The clinical, laboratory, and histopathological features of seven cases of Aspergillus fumigatus prosthetic valve endocarditis are presented. The exact nature of the lesion, a combination of infective fungal endocarditis and thrombosis on the prosthetic valve, is discussed and the difficulties in clinical diagnosis are emphasized. Helpful indications were sudden unexplained heart failure with the appearance of new murmurs, and emboli to large or medium-sized systemic arteries. Fever and anaemia were inconstant, and in no case was blood culture or precipitin investigation helpful. Spore contamination of operating theatre air was the likely source of infection, and measures taken to overcome this and other predisposing factors are discussed. Since medical diagnosis is usually late and the few reported cures in this condition have included replacement of the prosthesis, early surgical intervention combined with antifungal chemotherapy is advised.
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