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Rheumatic Heart Disease Australia

What is Acute Rheumatic Fever?

Acute rheumatic fever is an illness caused by an autoimmune response to a bacterial infection with group A streptococcus, commonly called the strep bacteria.

What is Rheumatic Heart Disease?

Rheumatic heart disease is chronic damage to the valves in the heart caused by repeated cases of acute rheumatic fever. This can be prevented.

How is it Prevented?

The prevention of rheumatic heart disease can be implemented at different stages. This includes Primordial, Primary, Secondary and Tertiary prevention.

How is it Diagnosed & Treated?

There is currently no single test to diagnose acute rheumatic fever. Diagnosis is a doctor’s decision based on clinical assessment of signs and symptoms.

For Individuals & Families

Remember:

Don’t ignore a sore throat

Go to the clinic. Treating a sore throat stops the strep germ and can prevent ARF

Remember:

Keep fit and active

Being overweight and inactive can cause further stress on the heart so it is good to kee

Remember:

Don’t miss your injections

If you have had rheumatic fever you must have regular penicillin injections to stop RHD

Remember:

Do not smoke

Because rheumatic fever can affect the heart it is important not to add further stress

Remember:

Brush your teeth

Brush teeth every morning and every evening.

Symptoms to look out for

Sore throat

Sore throat can lead to acute rheumatic fever

Subcutaneous nodules

Round, firm and painless lumps around joints

Skin sores

Skin sores can let the strep germ into the body

Sore or swollen joints

Including knees, ankles, elbows and wrists

Mary's Story

My name is Aunty Mary.  My nephew Michael is 10 years old.  Last year he got sick with rheumatic heart disease.  I want to tell you a story about rheumatic heart disease, and how this has affected my family. I want everybody to know my family’s story, so we can stop our kids getting sick hearts, and stop rheumatic heart disease in our people... Read on

Advocate Mum brings life experiences to help develop RHD film

Advocate Mum brings life experiences to help develop film

Raychelle McKenzie was just nine years old when she was diagnosed with rheumatic heart disease (RHD)........Read on

RHD in pregnancy

What if I'm pregnant?

Rheumatic heart disease is up to twice as common in women, and this is women of child bearing years. There is a 30-50% increased cardiac workload in normal pregnancy..... Read On

For Health Professionals & Researchers

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Guidelines & Diagnosis Calculator

ARF RHD Guideline

E-learning

Research

The END RHD CRE is the first time that any country has had an opportunity to build a comprehensive, evidence based strategy for ending rheumatic...

ATLAS

The Global Atlas of Rheumatic Heart Disease provides a new way to view the global distribution of RHD burden & as well as programs and...

Burden of the Disease

Acute rheumatic fever remains the most common cause of acquired heart disease in children around the world . Rates of acute rheumatic fever and rheumatic heart disease in remote Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities of Northern and Central Australia are some of the highest in the world this many more words will make it even...Read on

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RT : New Zealand 🇳🇿 supports the statement on behalf of the Pacific Islands to prioritise rheumatic heart disea… https://t.co/MfcvkBslfi

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RT : Time new cases of rheumatic heart disease become history in Australia. https://t.co/H69W75hGwc

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RT : Jonathan Carapetis: "NT Aboriginal people 55 times more likely to die of rheumatic heart disease" https://t.co/k2jrMd5Bmy

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RT : via Screening for rheumatic heart disease: is a paradigm shift required?… https://t.co/cNNuODlQI1

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RHD Control Programs

A coordinated control program is the most effective approach in improving adherence to secondary prophylaxis of ARF...Read on

Associate Professor Suzanne Belton - Producer Sharing a Heartbeat

Latest News

Women’s Health Literacy and Rheumatic Heart Disease

A recent study conducted by the Australian Maternity Outcomes Surveillance System (AMOSS) has shown that for Indigenous women in Australia... Read on

Latest News

Sharing a Heartbeat - Love, pregnancy, and living with rheumatic heart disease (RHD)

A new film written and directed by a group of Northern Territory Indigenous women follows the story of Tess, a young women whose boyfriend... Read on

Sharing a Heartbeat - a story about love, pregnancy and rheumatic heart disease

Latest News

Media Release - Sharing a Heartbeat

Sharing a Heartbeat: a short film about teen pregnancy and rheumatic heart disease FILM LAUNCH | Friday 29 September 2017 | 6:00 – 7:30pm... Read on

NSW Framework for acute rheumatic fever and rheumatic heart disease

Latest News

NSW framework for ARF and RHD released

"It's (acute rheumatic fever/rheumatic heart disease) taken such a toll on my family when it could've been prevented".  This was a... Read on

Taryn Dukes  - Looma community engagement supports RHD patients

Latest News

Innovation in remote WA community improves skin health for local Indigenous children

A collaborative community approach to improving skin health in the remote Indigenous community of Looma, Western Australia has shown great... Read on

Data Collection System

The data collection system is a central repository for the collection and reporting of Acute Rheumatic Fever (ARF) and Rheumatic Heart Disease (RHD) data...