How Does Rheumatic Heart Disease Usually Manifest In Later Years


How long does it take to develop rheumatic heart disease?

Today, most rheumatic fever cases occur in developing countries, particularly Africa and southeast Asia. Some people may develop a heart valve disease after having rheumatic fever as a child. It might take a few years to 20 years or more after a case of rheumatic fever for a valve problem to develop.

What are the long-term effects of rheumatic heart disease?

Serious Complications Include Long-term Heart Damage If rheumatic fever is not treated promptly, long-term heart damage (called rheumatic heart disease) may occur. Rheumatic heart disease weakens the valves between the chambers of the heart. Severe rheumatic heart disease can require heart surgery and result in death.

What is the most common clinical cardiac abnormality that is associated with acute rheumatic heart disease?

In chronic rheumatic heart disease, the mitral valve alone is the most commonly affected valve in an estimated 50% to 60% of cases. Combined lesions of both the aortic and mitral valves occur in 20% of cases.

How is rheumatic heart disease caused?

Rheumatic heart disease (RHD) is a life-threatening heart condition which results from damage to heart valves caused by one or several episodes of rheumatic fever, an autoimmune inflammatory reaction to infection with streptococcal bacteria (streptococcal pharyngitis or strep throat).

Is rheumatic heart disease permanent?

There is no cure for rheumatic heart disease and the damage to the heart valves are permanent. Patients with severe rheumatic heart disease will often require surgery to replace or repair the damages valve or valves.

What is Sydenham chorea?

Sydenham chorea mainly involves jerky, uncontrollable and purposeless movements of the hands, arms, shoulder, face, legs, and trunk. These movements look like twitches, and disappear during sleep. Other symptoms may include: Changes in handwriting.

How long can you live with rheumatic heart disease?

Those who had mild RHD at diagnosis had the most favorable prognosis, with over 60% remaining mild after 10 years, and 10% being inactive by the end of the 14‐year study period. Nonetheless, nearly 30% of this group demonstrated disease progression (18.3% moderate, 11.4% severe, half of whom had surgery) by 10 years.

Can you have rheumatic fever without a fever?

Rheumatic fever usually occurs about two to four weeks after a strep throat infection, and can be so mild you don’t even know you have it. The symptoms vary and may include: Fever.

Why mitral valve is most commonly affected in rheumatic heart disease?

In most cases, the mitral valve is involved with 1 or more of the other 3. In acute disease, small thrombi form along the lines of valve closure. In chronic disease, there is thickening and fibrosis of the valve resulting in stenosis, or less commonly, regurgitation.

What is the most common cause of mitral stenosis?

Rheumatic fever is the most common cause of mitral valve stenosis. It can damage the mitral valve by causing the flaps to thicken or fuse.

How does rheumatic fever affect the brain?

A condition that affects the brain and nervous system, called Sydenham chorea can also occur. Symptoms of this condition are: Loss of control of emotions, with bouts of unusual crying or laughing. Quick, jerky movements that mainly affect the face, feet, and hands.

What does rheumatic fever do to the brain?

In many cases of patients who had rheumatic fever–at times undiagnosed–there is a chronic involvement of the brain as a result of disseminated recurrent obliterating arteritis or emboli in the small blood vessels, especially in the brain membranes or the cortex.

Is there a link between rheumatic fever and rheumatoid arthritis?

Although the symptoms of rheumatic fever are similar to those of RA, the two diseases are not related.

Where is rheumatic heart disease most common?

The most common form of rheumatic heart disease affects the heart valves. It may take several years after an episode of rheumatic fever for valve damage to develop or symptoms to appear.

Is rheumatic heart disease genetic?

Although rheumatic heart disease is caused by an infection, research has shown that some families are more likely to develop the condition than others –a genetic component to developing the disease.

What causes infective endocarditis?

Endocarditis is usually caused by an infection. Bacteria, fungi or other germs from another part of your body, such as your mouth, spread through your bloodstream and attach to damaged areas in your heart. If it’s not treated quickly, endocarditis can damage or destroy your heart valves.

Can tonsils affect the heart?

If Tonsillitis Is Caused by Strep, It Can Cause Rheumatic Fever. The damage to the heart valve, known as rheumatic heart disease, can affect you the rest of your life, says Clark.

Who is most affected by rheumatic heart disease?

Rheumatic heart disease is the most commonly acquired heart disease in people under age 25, and mostly affects children and adolescents in low- and middle-income countries.

Why is it called St. Vitus dance?

The name St. Vitus Dance derives from the late Middle Ages, when persons with the disease attended the chapels of St. Vitus, who was believed to have curative powers. The disorder was first explained by the English physician Thomas Sydenham.

What is erythema Marginatum?

Erythema marginatum is reactive inflammatory erythema seen most commonly in association with acute rheumatic fever. Although a rare cutaneous manifestation, it is of utmost diagnostic value for acute rheumatic fever as well as other rare disorders.

What is a delayed manifestation of RF as a result of involvement of the central nervous system?

Sydenham’s chorea It is usually a delayed manifestation, and is often the sole manifestation of ARF. However, chorea may occur in association with other major manifestations of RF, particularly in the first attack.

Can you exercise with rheumatic heart disease?

Living Well with Rheumatic Disease: Exercise Exercising can help rheumatology patients decrease pain and reduce disease symptoms, and can make a substantial contribution to overall flexibility. Plus, it will improve their mental outlook.

Does rheumatic fever rash itch?

The rash appears as pink or red macules (flat spots) or papules (small lumps), which spread outwards in a circular shape. As the lesions advance, the edges become raised and red, and the centre clears. The lesions are not itchy or painful, and sometimes go unnoticed by the patient.

What does a rheumatic fever rash look like?

A flat, painless rash with a wavy edge (erythema marginatum) may appear as the other symptoms subside. It lasts for only a short time, sometimes less than a day. This photo shows the flat, painless rash with a wavy edge that may appear with rheumatic fever.

Is rheumatic fever fatal?

Between 30 and 45 percent of people with RF will develop heart problems. Recurrences of rheumatic fever often occur within 5 years. In the past, RF was a major cause of mortality, but now this is rare in industrialized countries. However, RF is fatal in 1.5 percent of cases worldwide.