How Does Strep Cause Rheumatic Heart Disease?

Is rheumatic heart disease hereditary?

It is not clear why some people who are infected with group A Streptococcus bacteria go on to develop rheumatic fever, while others do not; however, it appears that some families may have a genetic susceptibility to develop the condition..

Can your body fight strep without antibiotics?

If you have strep throat—which is caused by bacteria—your doctor may prescribe an antibiotic, such as penicillin. But strep throat goes away on its own in 3 to 7 days with or without antibiotics.

How does rheumatic fever cause rheumatic heart disease?

How does rheumatic fever damage the heart? This infection causes swelling and muscle damage to the heart. It can also damage the heart valves in a way that keeps the blood from moving through the heart normally. The infection can cause heart valve leaflets to stick together, which narrows the valve opening.

What are the complications of rheumatic heart disease?

What are possible complications of rheumatic heart disease?Heart failure. This can occur from either a severely narrowed or leaking heart valve.Bacterial endocarditis. This is an infection of the inner lining of the heart. … Complications of pregnancy and delivery due to heart damage. … Ruptured heart valve.

How was rheumatic fever treated in the 1940s?

The introduction of antibiotics (sulphonamides and then penicillin in the 1940s) and the trials conducted during the 1940s and in the USA, demonstrated that penicillin treatment for streptococcal pharyngitis has a preventive effect against rheumatic fever.

What antibiotics treat rheumatic fever?

The mainstay antibiotic is IM benzathine benzylpenicillin. Oral phenoxymethylpenicillin and erythromycin are also used as alternatives. These three antibiotics, in the required dosage forms are on the current EMLc. No additional antibiotic agents have been identified to date.

How long does it take to recover from rheumatic fever?

Rheumatic fever can last from 6 weeks to more than 6 months. Your long-term health depends on how your heart has been affected by the disease.

What is the main cause of rheumatic heart disease?

What causes rheumatic heart disease? Rheumatic heart disease is caused by rheumatic fever, an inflammatory disease that can affect many connective tissues, especially in the heart, joints, skin, or brain. The heart valves can be inflamed and become scarred over time.

How long can you live with rheumatic heart disease?

The relative survival was 96.9% (95% CI 96.1–97.5%) at one year and 81.2% (95% CI 79.2–83.0%) at five years (S3 Fig). The risk of death among RHD/ARF patients increased with age over and above background rates; there was also increased risk for both male and iTaukei patients (S4 Table).

What happens if rheumatic heart disease is left untreated?

If left untreated, rheumatic heart disease can lead to heart valve damage, stroke, heart failure, and death.

What are the chances of getting rheumatic fever from strep throat?

Fewer than 0.3% of people who have strep throat also get rheumatic fever. Rheumatic fever is most common among children aged 5 to 15, but adults may have the condition as well. Doctors think that a weakened immune system may make some people more likely to get rheumatic fever.

How does strep turn into rheumatic fever?

Rheumatic fever is thought to be caused by a response of the body’s defense system — the immune system. The immune system responds to the earlier strep throat or scarlet fever infection and causes a generalized inflammatory response.

How do you know if you have rheumatic heart disease?

The symptoms of heart valve problems – which are often the result of rheumatic heart disease – can include: chest discomfort or pain. irregular or rapid heartbeats (heart palpitations) shortness of breath.

Is rheumatic heart disease permanent?

Rheumatic heart disease is a condition that causes permanent damage to the heart valves. It can develop after a child has rheumatic fever. Rheumatic fever is the body’s response to a strep infection of the throat or tonsils or “strep throat.” Rheumatic fever may also follow scarlet fever.

Can you live a long life with heart disease?

Simply put, if you take care of yourself and make the necessary changes, you can live a long, full life in spite of your heart disease diagnosis. It could add years, even decades, to your life. On the other hand, if you pursue a high-risk lifestyle you could find yourself in serious trouble.

How is rheumatic heart disease prevented?

Ideally, ARF and RHD can be prevented. Antibiotic therapy (such as penicillin) to treat Group A Streptococcus throat infection can dramatically reduce the risk of ARF and its complication, rheumatic heart disease. If ARF or RHD do occur, long-term antibiotics can reduce progression to more severe disease.

Which valve is most commonly affected by rheumatic heart disease?

Rheumatic heart disease most commonly affects the mitral valve (which has only two leaflets; Figure 2) or the aortic valve, but any valve can be affected, and more than one can be involved.

What bacteria causes rheumatic heart disease?

Rheumatic heart disease is a condition in which permanent damage to heart valves is caused by rheumatic fever. The heart valve is damaged by a disease process that generally begins with a strep throat caused by bacteria called Streptococcus, and may eventually cause rheumatic fever.