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Susie Whitworth, PhD, Nursing, answeredRheumatic fever is an intense, immune-mediated inflammatory disease that effects multi systems in the body. It follows a group A streptococcal throat infection. It can cause chronic heart valve disorders and can produce permanent heart dysfunction. The incidence of rheumatic fever has declined in the U.S. due to the use of antimicrobial agents to treat strep throat.
Rheumatic fever may affect many parts of the body. It can affect the heart and produce inflamed or scarred heart valves. It can also cause painful, swollen joints; skin rash, especially on the chest or abdomen; abnormal movements; or bumps under the skin.