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Arch Dis Child. 1999 Apr;80(4):353-8.

Rheumatic chorea in northern Australia: a clinical and epidemiological study.

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  • 1Division of Infectious Diseases, Hospital for Sick Children, 555 University Avenue, Toronto, Ontario, M5G 1X8, Canada. jonathan.carapetis@utoronto.ca

Abstract

To describe the epidemiology and clinical features of Sydenham's chorea in the Aboriginal population of northern Australia a review was conducted of 158 episodes in 108 people: 106 were Aborigines, 79 were female, and the mean age was 10.9 years at first episode. Chorea occurred in 28% of cases of acute rheumatic fever, carditis occurred in 25% of episodes of chorea, and arthritis in 8%. Patients with carditis or arthritis tended to have raised acute phase reactants and streptococcal serology. Two episodes lasted at least 30 months. Mean time to first recurrence of chorea was 2.1 years compared with 1.2 years to second recurrence. Established rheumatic heart disease developed in 58% of cases and was more likely in those presenting with acute carditis, although most people who developed rheumatic heart disease did not have evidence of acute carditis with chorea. Differences in the patterns of chorea and other manifestations of acute rheumatic fever in different populations may hold clues to its pathogenesis. Long term adherence to secondary prophylaxis is crucial following all episodes of acute rheumatic fever, including chorea, to prevent recurrence.

PMID:
10086943
PMCID:
PMC1717891
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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