Last reviewed 06/2022
Carditis which involves the three layers of the heart:
- bread and butter pericarditis, which may cause a friction rub, invariably resolving with few sequelae
- myocarditis - may cause heart failure. Dilatation may result in valvular incompetence, most commonly mitral.
- endocarditis and valvulitis - chronic rheumatic heart disease ensues in 50% of those with RF and carditis. Valvular damage is common, especially stenosis.
The frequency of involvement is given below:
Valve(s) % rheumatic valve lesions
- mitral 50
- mitral and aortic 40
- mitral, aortic and tricuspid 5
- aortic 2
- other combinations 3
Although chronic rheumatic heart disease is compatible with a normal life span there is a considerable risk of decompensation and heart failure in older age.
- central nervous system complications may result in Sydenham's chorea