Heart Inflammation Recovery
After treatment for heart inflammation, it is important to see your healthcare provider regularly for follow-up visits. Based on the type of heart inflammation you have, the inflammation may reappear after several months or longer. Talk to your provider about your risk and what to watch for.
Receive routine follow-up care
- Blood tests for bacteria causing endocarditis may be needed every 24 to 48 hours until the infection is gone from the bloodstream. For pericarditis, blood tests for markers of inflammation — C-reactive protein (CRP) levels and the erythrocyte sedimentation rate (ESR) — may be repeated until the levels return to normal. Your healthcare provider may also continue anti- treatment until these levels return to normal.
- Heart imaging tests, such as cardiac MRI or echocardiograms, take pictures of your heart after treatment to help your provider monitor your condition and look for any changes.
Prevent serious problems or getting the disease again
People with endocarditis have an increased lifelong risk of getting the disease again. People with pericarditis can develop the disease again in the first 18 months after treatment. In people with myocarditis, the disease can return many years after their first episode.
It is important to prevent other health problems and try to lower the risk of having heart inflammation again.
- Continue all medicines as directed by your healthcare provider, including those for other health problems such as heart failure, arrhythmia, or medical conditions that may have caused your heart inflammation. Treatment for endocarditis and pericarditis often lasts weeks. You may need to take some medicines for the rest of your life. If prescribed, lifelong use of antifungals for fungal endocarditis or colchicine for pericarditis may lower your risk of having the disease again.
- Do not exercise until your provider tells you it is safe.
- Avoid known causes and risk factors.
- Make healthy lifestyle changes as recommended by your provider. This includes avoiding amphetamines, cocaine, or IV drugs.
- Get regular dental care.
Tell your healthcare provider if you have fever or chills; or symptoms of heart failure such as shortness of breath, tiredness, or swelling in your legs.