RHEUMATIC HEART DISEASE; An Ill Wind From The Past

in brs-africa •  12 days ago

Rheumatic Heart Disease [RHD] is by far the commonest Valvulopathy [disease of the heart valves], and the 3rd leading cause of heart failure in the tropics, Nigeria inclusive.
While it usually occurs at middle age, with the peak age of incidence being the 5th decade of life, the inciting event usually occurs in the second half of the first, and the whole of the second, decade of life [5 to 20 years of age].
The sequence of events that leads to chronic RHD starts from a strept sore throat infection, specifically the type caused by Streptococcus pyogenes [otherwise called Group A, Beta hemolytic, Streptococcus]. This, if left untreated, may be complicated by Rheumatic Fever: an immune mediated process in which the body's defense mechanism confuses some tissues in the body, including the heart valves, with molecules found in the organism, and ends up attacking them, leading to inflammation. Years later, the heart valves so attacked thickens and begins to malfunction, leading to RHD.
RHD, in some cases, is amenable to medical therapy. However, in most cases, it ultimately progresses to heart failure, and may need surgical intervention, a thing that is not yet common in these parts.
The best way to avoid this unfortunate cascade of events is simply not allowing it to start in the first place.
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Source

PREVENTION
With prompt treatment of strept sore throat infection, using Penicillin V [or substitutes like Amoxicillin and Ampicillin; or macrolides like Erythromycin and Clarithromycin, for individuals with penicillin allergy], for at least 10 days; and optimal treatment of Acute Rheumatic Fever, if and when it occurs, the likelihood of developing RHD reduces drastically.
To prove how effective these measures can be: About a 100 years ago, ARF and RHD were a leading cause of death in the Western world. However, following the advent of antibiotics, case fatality rate for Rheumatic Fever has dropped to almost 0%; and the probability of developing RHD has dropped from 60-70%, to 9-30%.
Unfortunately, in Africa, for obvious reasons, the figures for both are still high.

REFERENCES

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A very critical disease. Hearing of it for the first time. Thanks for sharing this eye-opener piece @chidiebere

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Life-threatening diseases troubling Nigerian population go unrecognized in their initial stage. Lack of healthcare professionals, poor medical treatments and facilities are the dominant factors responsible for this condition.

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It is well!!

Very informative
Thank you very much
Actually, We're messing with a Rheumatic Disease Autoimmune
It's not thus bad but it's not good either.

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rheumatic heart disease can be prevented to a great extent by following a healthy routine and active lifestyle.

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Good to know.
But my Wife's problem is not Rheumatic Heart Disease, She's suffers with bones ache.
For now there is no Specific Diagnostic for her problem but she's getting treatment with pills everyday. :(

Hi brother congratulations for the great post about heart disease ,you do thank you very much for letting us know I wish you a wonderful day

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Thank you bro

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👍

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Este post ha sido votado por el Equipo de curación de bear-español por su relevancia informativa.