Point-of-Care Ultrasound Facilitated Detection of Femoral Occlusive Septic Emboli During Mitral Valve Surgery: A Case Report

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Acute lower extremity ischemia from septic emboli is a surgical emergency. Timely diagnosis and management are critical to improve patient outcome. However, traditional diagnostic modalities such as intraoperative angiogram are time-consuming, require special equipment and personnel, and introduce contrast exposure for critically ill patients. There are limited reports of utilization of point-of-care ultrasound to detect peripheral septic emboli. We present a case where femoral occlusive septic emboli were identified by point-of-care ultrasound after mitral valve replacement. This facilitated early surgical embolectomy and limb salvage. We suggest that perioperative point-of-care ultrasonography should be used as a first-line screening test in patients with acute lower extremity ischemia.

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