Two hundred years have passed since the recognition that rheumatic fever affects the heart.1 Since that time, our understanding, diagnosis, and treatment of the disease have changed dramatically. The recognition that pharyngitis was related to acute rheumatic fever (ARF) came in the early 1930s. In the early 1950s Wannamaker and co-workers showed that ARF could be prevented by early treatment of group A β-hemolytic streptococcal (GABHS) pharyngitis with penicillin.2,3 The association of a preceding GABHS pharyngitis, along with the discovery that early treatment of this infection could essentially eradicate the risk of rheumatic heart disease, has produced a remarkable change in the morbidity and mortality of this complication.
KeywordsInfective Endocarditis Sore Throat Rheumatic Fever Rheumatic Heart Disease Antigen Test
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