Rheumatic heart disease, refers to a group of acute and chronic heart disorders caused by the rheumatic fever, making heart valve damage even after the rheumatic fever is resolved.
Rheumatic fever is an inflammatory disease, rare but potentially life-threatening, often starting out as a strep throat infection. It usually occurs in children between the ages of 5 and 15 years. And almost 60% of the patient will develop some degree of subsequent heart disease.
Signs and symptoms include:
heart palpitations (when the heart flutters or misses beats)
a thumping sensation in the chest
shortness of breath
swollen ankles, wrists or stomach.
In general, treatments depend on the type of heart damage. If a child is diagnosed with the rheumatic fever, daily antibiotics is needed against recurrence of the rheumatic fever and other heart diseases until 25 or 30 years.