Acute Rheumatic Fever and Rheumatic Heart Disease

What is RHD?

RHD occurs when the heart valves are damaged by recurrent, untreated episodes of ARF. Whilst effective treatments exist to prevent people diagnosed with ARF from developing RHD, ARF is too often mis-diagnosed and mis-managed in Australia. Once the heart valves are damaged, there is no cure.  People affected by RHD require regular monitoring and follow-up, and may eventually require surgery to repair or replace the damaged heart valves. Lifelong medical check-ups and appropriate management are essential for every person living with RHD, to minimise any ongoing damage to the valves and heart muscle.