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Candida infections have become one of the most common causes of morbidity and mortality in paediatric ICUs, especially following complex surgeries, all over the world. Therefore, we conducted a 5-year analysis of Candida bloodstream infections in our tertiary paediatric cardiovascular surgery ICU.
One thousand nine hundred and thirty four children, 0–16-year-old, who underwent paediatric cardiovascular surgery between January 2016–June 2021 were enrolled in this retrospective study. Blood cultures obtained from 1056 patients, who needed mechanical ventilation and indwelling devices longer than 5 days and had the signs of infection according to Center for Disease Control criteria, were evaluated. The isolated pathogens were recorded. 137 with Candida bloodstream infections were reanalysed for their age, weight, cardiac pathologies, duration of mechanical ventilation, hospitalisation and antibiotic use.
One hundred and thirty-seven out of one thousand and fifty six patients (12.9%) had Candida growth in their blood cultures. C. albicans (n: 50, 36.5%), C. parapsilosis (n: 20, 14.6%), C. tropicalis (n: 8, 5.8%), C. glabrata (n: 5, 3.7%), and other non-albicans Candida species (n: 54, 39.4%) were isolated. The patients with Candida bloodstream infections had lower age, longer duration of mechanical ventilation, longer length of hospital stay and antibiotic use (p-values<0.05). They had cardiac pathologies as atrioventricular septal defect (18.9%), transposition of great arteries (17.6%), tetralogy of Fallot (12.4%), transposition of great arteries + double outlet right ventricle, or total anomalous pulmonary venous return + atrioventricular septal defect (37.9%), and others. The Candida bloodstream infections mortality was 11.6% (16/137).
The most common cause of Candida bloodstream infections in the last five years in our paediatric cardiovascular surgery ICU was non-albicans Candida species. Prolonged mechanical ventilation, hospitalisation and antibiotic use, low age, and weight were found as the main risk factors that raise the morbidity and mortality rates of Candida bloodstream infections.
CHD increases the risk of infective endocarditis due to the substrate of prosthetic materials and residual lesions. However, lesion-specific and mortality risks data are lacking. We sought to analyse clinical course and mortality of infective endocarditis in a cohort of adult CHD.
Retrospective analysis of all cases of proven and probable infective endocarditis (Duke’s criteria) followed in our adult CHD clinic between 1970 and August, 2021. Epidemiological, clinical and imaging data were analysed. Predictors of surgical treatment and mortality were assessed using regression analysis.
During a mean follow-up of 15.8 ± 10.9 years, 96 patients had 105 infective endocarditis episodes, half with previous cardiac surgery (corrective or palliative). The most frequent diagnoses were: ventricular septal defect, bicuspid aortic valve, Tetralogy of Fallot and pulmonary atresia. The site of infection was identified by echocardiography in 82 episodes (91%), most frequently in aortic (n = 27), tricuspid (n = 15), and mitral (n = 13) valves. Blood cultures were positive in 79% of cases, being streptococci (n = 29) and staphylococci (n = 23) the predominant pathogens. Surgery was necessary in 40% and the in-hospital mortality was 10.5%, associated with heart failure (p < 0.001; OR 13.5) and a non-surgical approach (p = 0.003; OR 5.06).
In an adult CHD cohort, infective endocarditis was more frequent in patients with ventricular septal defect and bicuspid aortic valves, which contradicts the current guidelines that excludes them from prophylaxis. Surgical treatment is often required and mortality remains substantial. Prevention of this serious complication should be one of the major tasks in the care of adults with CHD.
Cardiac involvement associated with multi-system inflammatory syndrome in children has been extensively reported, but the prevalence of cardiac involvement in children with SARS-CoV-2 infection in the absence of inflammatory syndrome has not been well described. In this retrospective, single centre, cohort study, we describe the cardiac involvement found in this population and report on outcomes of patients with and without elevated cardiac biomarkers. Those with multi-system inflammatory syndrome in children, cardiomyopathy, or complex CHD were excluded. Inclusion criteriaz were met by 80 patients during the initial peak of the pandemic at our institution. High-sensitivity troponin T and/or N-terminal pro-brain type natriuretic peptide were measured in 27/80 (34%) patients and abnormalities were present in 5/27 (19%), all of whom had underlying comorbidities. Advanced respiratory support was required in all patients with elevated cardiac biomarkers. Electrocardiographic abnormalities were identified in 14/38 (37%) studies. Echocardiograms were performed on 7/80 patients, and none demonstrated left ventricular dysfunction. Larger studies to determine the true extent of cardiac involvement in children with COVID-19 would be useful to guide recommendations for standard workup and management.
Paediatric ICUs have shared the burden of the COVID-19 pandemic, including subspecialty cardiac ICUs. We sought to address knowledge gaps regarding patient characteristics, acuity, and sequelae of COVID-19 in the paediatric cardiac ICU setting.
Retrospective review of paediatric cardiac ICU admissions with COVID-19-related disease.
Single centre tertiary care paediatric cardiac ICU.
All patients with PCR/antibody evidence of primary COVID-19 infection, and/or Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome in Children, were admitted between 26 March, 2020 and 31 March, 2021.
Main outcomes measures:
Patient-level demographics, pre-existing conditions, clinical symptoms, and outcomes related to ICU admission were captured from medical records.
Among 1064 patients hospitalised with COVID-19/Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome in Children, 102 patients (9.5%) were admitted to cardiac ICU, 76 of which were symptomatic (median age 12.5 years [IQR 7.5–16.0]). The primary system involved at presentation was cardiovascular in 48 (63%). Vasoactive infusions were required in 62% (n = 47), with eight patients (11%) requiring VA ECMO. Severity of disease was categorised as mild/moderate in 16 (21%) and severe/critical in 60 patients (79%). On univariate analysis, African-American race, presentation with gastrointestinal symptoms or elevated inflammatory markers were associated with risk for severe disease. All-cause death was observed in five patients (7%, n = 5/72) with four patients remaining hospitalised at the time of data query.
COVID-19 and its cardiovascular sequelae were associated with important morbidity and significant mortality in a notable minority of paediatric patients admitted to a paediatric cardiac ICU. Further study is required to quantify the risk of morbidity and mortality for COVID-19 and sequelae.
We aim to describe the early and upto 16 months follow-up of post-coronavirus disease (COVID), multi-system inflammatory syndrome in children (MIS-C), with special reference to cardiac involvement.
This cohort non-interventional descriptive study included patients <18 years admitted between May, 2020 and April, 2021. Based on underlying similarities, children were classified as post-COVID MIS-C with overlapping Kawasaki Disease, MIS-C with no overlapping Kawasaki Disease, and MIS-C with shock. Post-discharge, patients were followed at 1, 3, 6, 12, and 16 months.
Forty-one patients predominantly males (73%), at median age of 7 years (range 0.2–16 years) fulfilled the World Health Organisation criteria for MIS-C. Cardiac involvement was seen in 15 (36.5%); impaired left ventricle (LV) function in 5 (12.2%), coronary artery involvement in 10 (24.4%), pericardial effusion in 6 (14.6%) patients, and no arrhythmias. There were two hospital deaths (4.9%), both in MIS-C shock subgroup (2/10, 20%). At 1 month, there was persistent LV dysfunction in 2/5, coronary artery abnormalities in 7/10, and pericardial effusion resolved completely in all patients. By 6 months, LV function returned to normal in all but coronary abnormalities persisted in two patients. At last follow-up (median 9.8 months, interquartile range 2–16 months), in 36/38 (94.7%) patients, coronary artery dilatation was persistent in 2 (20%) patients.
Children with MIS-C have a good early outcome, though MIS-C with shock can be life-threatening subgroup in a resource-constrained country setting. On midterm follow-up, there is normalisation of LV function in all and recovery of coronary abnormalities in 80% of patients.
The Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic negatively impacted global healthcare. Consequences in Pediatric and Congenital Heart Surgery programmes and mortality of congenital heart patients infected with severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-Cov-2) is still to be determined.
To study the COVID-19 pandemic implications in Brazilian Pediatric and Congenital Heart Surgery programmes.
We conducted a national online survey covering all states that perform Pediatric and Congenital Heart Surgery from 10 November to 22 November, 2020, using a Google forms questionnaire. We formulated questions related to impact on surgical volume, case-mix, and mortality. Then we asked about short-term post-operative COVID-19 infection and outcomes.
We received responses from 46 centres representing all states where there were a Pediatric and Congenital Heart Surgery programme and all high-volume centres across the country. All but one centre experienced a significant decrease in surgical volume, and 23.9% of the responders revealed less than one-quarter of volume decrement. On the other hand, in over 70% of the centres, there was a significant surgical volume reduction. In addition to this, there was a shift in case-mix in 41 centres (89.1%) towards more complex cases. More than one-third of the responders revealed increased mortality in 2020 compared to previous years, and 43.5% of the programmes (20 centres) had at least one patient contaminated by SARS-Cov-2, accounting for 48 patients. Mortality in post-operative infected patients was 45.8% (22 patients).
In general, Brazilian Pediatric and Congenital Heart Surgery programmes were severely affected by decreased surgical volume, unbalanced case-mix towards more complex cases, and increased mortality. Almost half of the programmes related post-operative COVID-19 contamination with high mortality.
Acute rheumatic fever is the most commonly acquired heart disease in developing countries. The most common cardiac presentation is valvular disease. Although some rhythm disturbances may occur during the acute stages of the disease, ventricular tachycardia is extremely rare. Here, a case of acute rheumatic fever with severe endocarditis involving four valves and ventricular tachycardia is presented.
Platelet indices are used to evaluate platelet activation and function which change in inflammatory diseases. We hypothesise that platelet indices such as plateletcrit, mean platelet volume, and platelet distribution width may be more useful as prognostic indicators for myopericarditis in children.
A total of 60 children were included in this study. Group 1 consists of children with myopericarditis, Group 2 is those with respiratory infections, and Group 3 consists of control group children of similar age and gender with the patient groups. Complete blood count parameters, C-reactive protein, and troponin values of the whole study group were recorded. Myopericarditis was diagnosed based on acute chest pain, dyspnea, palpitations, heart failure signs, arrhythmia symptoms and ST/T wave change, low voltage, supraventricular tachycardia/ventricular tachycardia on ECG, or elevated troponin T/troponin I levels or functional abnormalities on echocardiography. A comparison of the platelet indices made during diagnosis and 2 weeks after treatment was done for the myopericarditis patients.
There was no statistically significant difference in platelet indicies values. However, the increase in platelets and plateletcrit values after the treatment of myopericarditis was statistically significant. This study pointed out that there was a negative correlation between platelet–plateletcrit values and the troponin I–C-reactive protein.
We found that platelet count and plateletcrit values increased after treatment. This is important as it is the first study in children to investigate the possible role of platelet indications for myopericarditis in children.
We aimed to examine the literature to determine if both paediatric and adult patients diagnosed with congenital heart disease (CHD) are at a higher risk of poor outcomes if they have the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), compared to those without CHD.
A systematic review was executed using the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-analysis (PRISMA) guidelines. To identify articles related to COVID-19 and CHD, an extensive literature search was performed on EMBASE, Medline, Scopus, and Global Health databases using keywords and MeSH terms.
A total of 12 articles met the inclusion criteria and were included for analysis in this systematic review. Two themes were identified for data extraction: evidence supporting higher risks in CHD patients and evidence against higher risks in CHD patients. After combining the data, there were 99 patients with CHDs out of which 12 required admissions to ICU.
This systematic review suggests that CHD may increase the risk of poor outcomes for those with COVID-19, but also highlights the necessity for more research with larger sample sizes in order to make a more justified conclusion, as the majority of papers that were analysed were case series and case reports. Future research should aim to quantify the risks if possible whilst accounting for various confounding factors such as age and treatment history.
Cardiac hydatid cysts are a rare presentation of hydatid cyst disease in the body, with a reported cardiac involvement rate of <2%. The left ventricle is the most common site of cardiac involvement. Here, we report a patient with a hydatid cyst that ruptured into the pericardium after producing an aneurysm on the right ventricular free wall, appearing as fibrinated fluid and a solid mass lesion in the pericardium. Our aim in this case report was to emphasise that the possibility of a hydatid cyst should not be overlooked in the differential diagnosis of pericardial tumours.
Endocarditis of congenital coronary fistulas in the cardiac chambers is rare, especially in the paediatric age group. We describe the case of a 9-year-old boy with a fistula from the dilated right coronary artery to the junction of the superior caval vein to the right atrium, complicated by endocarditis. Treatment consisted of 6 weeks of antibiotics and interventional closure of the fistula 3 months later with an Amplatzer vascular plug.
An adolescent male with a recent history of streptococcal pharyngitis presented with severe substernal chest pain, troponin leak, and ST-segment elevation, which are suggestive of acute inferolateral myocardial infarction. The coronary angiogram was normal. The patient was subsequently diagnosed with non-rheumatic streptococcal myocarditis. He was treated with amoxicillin and had excellent recovery. Non-rheumatic streptococcal myocarditis is an important mimic of acute myocardial infarction in young adults.
We report a case of subarachnoid haemorrhage resulting from a mycotic aortic aneurysm in a child with CHD. The patient previously underwent operations for CHD and had a subarachnoid haemorrhage of unknown cause before the scheduled re-operation. During the re-operation, a sealed rupture of an undiagnosed mycotic ascending aortic aneurysm was identified, and the causative organism was later identified as Streptococcus. A postoperative MRI indicated a partially thrombosed cerebral aneurysm. This case demonstrates that a mycotic aortic aneurysm can be a cause of intracranial haemorrhage in children.
Hydatid cyst is a serious parasitic infection in endemic areas. Cardiac hydatid cyst is not a common presentation, and primary pericardial hydatid cyst is rare. Echocardiography, CT, and MRI are important in diagnosing and locating cardiac echinococcosis. Herein, we present the case of an asymptomatic butcher with primary pericardial hydatid cyst and its successful treatment.
Tricuspid valvectomy is a rare surgical intervention, and knowledge regarding long-term outcome in children is lacking. We report a favourable outcome 11 years after tricuspid valvectomy in early infancy without subsequent surgery or other cardiac interventions. Specific criteria for timing of re-intervention are lacking. Application of adult tricuspid and pulmonary regurgitation recommendations is helpful but has limitations.
We present a case of a rare association of infective endocarditis and a coin lesion in the lung caused by Candida albicans. The lesion disappeared after 6 weeks of treatment with 5 mg/kg/day amphotericin B.
COVD-19 pandemic has overwhelmed many healthcare systems worldwide. Underlying cardiovascular disease predisposes to greater disease susceptibility and more complications including mortality. Such data is unverified in adults with congenital heart disease (ACHD). The aim of the study is to report the Tehran experience with respect to preventative self-care measures, disease exposure, susceptibility, and outcomes after COVD-19 infection in ACHD patients.
A telephone-based survey was conducted in ACHD patients, focusing on new-onset symptoms that might indicate COVID-19 infection, prevention measures, confirmed infection rates, and outcomes.
Three-hundred and nine ACHD patients, with a mean age of 29.13 years (range from 14 to 72 years, SD = 10.64), and 170 (55%) women were assessed. The majority (86.7%) had moderate or complex ACHD. Two-thirds (67.3%) of the patients practiced high-level preventative self-care measures. After community exposure, 33.3% developed COVID-19, and after household exposure, 43.7% developed COVID-19. There was only one mortality in a post-operative patient. Thirty-seven patients (12%) reported new symptoms including cough (10%), fatigue (8%), fever (7%), and new dyspnoea (6.5%). Amongst 18 (6%) with confirmed COVID-19, there was only 1 mortality in a post-operative patient. Age (adjusted OR = 1.19, 95% CI: 1.07–1.31, p = 0.001), contact with confirmed COVID-19 cases (adjusted OR = 59.34, 95% CI: 3.68–955.10, p = 0.004) were independently associated with COVID-19 infection.
Mortality risk associated with COVID-19 infection in ACHD patients with moderate or severe disease appears to be relatively low, similar to the general population. Such risk appears to act through conventional risk factors, and in this cohort, we demonstrated age as a significant risk factor in addition to exposure to the development of COVID-19 infection. Preventative self-care measures are a potentially significant and impactful intervention target for intervention and for improving outcomes.
To determine the utility of screening electrocardiograms after severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection among children in detecting myocarditis related to coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).
A retrospective chart review was performed at a large paediatric academic institution to identify patients with prior SARS-CoV-2 infection who received a screening electrocardiogram by their primary care providers and were subsequently referred for outpatient cardiology consultation due to an abnormal electrocardiogram. The outcomes were the results from their cardiology evaluations, including testing and final diagnoses.
Among 46 patients, during their preceding COVID-19 illness, the majority had mild symptoms, 4 were asymptomatic, and 1 had moderate symptoms. The median length of time from positive SARS-CoV-2 test to screening electrocardiogram was 22 days, and many electrocardiogram findings that prompted cardiology consultation were normal variants in asymptomatic adolescent athletes. Patients underwent frequent additional testing at their cardiology appointments: repeat electrocardiogram (72%), echocardiogram (59%), Holter monitor (11%), exercise stress test (7%), and cardiac MRI (2%). Five patients were incidentally diagnosed with CHD or structural cardiac abnormalities, and three patients had conduction abnormalities (pre-mature atrial contractions, pre-mature ventricular contractions, borderline prolonged QTc), although potentially incidental to COVID-19. No patients were diagnosed with myocarditis or ventricular dysfunction.
In a small cohort of children with prior COVID-19, who were primarily either asymptomatic or mildly symptomatic, subsequent screening electrocardiograms identified various potential abnormalities prompting cardiology consultation, but no patient was diagnosed with myocarditis. Larger multi-centre studies are necessary to confirm these results and to evaluate those with more severe disease.