Healthdirect Free Australian health advice you can count on.

Medical problem? Call 1800 022 222. If you need urgent medical help, call triple zero immediately

healthdirect Australia is a free service where you can talk to a nurse or doctor who can help you know what to do.

beginning of content

Rheumatic fever

1-minute read

Rheumatic fever is an inflammatory disease that affects many of the body's connective tissues, especially those of the heart, joints, brain and skin. Children aged 5 to 15 years old are most at risk, especially Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children living in rural or remote areas or in difficult conditions.

Symptoms and signs of rheumatic fever may include:

Rheumatic fever is a serious condition and requires medical care. Early treatment with antibiotics can prevent long-term, serious complications of rheumatic heart disease.

Follow the links below to find trusted information about rheumatic fever.

Learn more here about the development and quality assurance of healthdirect content.

Last reviewed: August 2020

Back To Top

Need more information?

These trusted information partners have more on this topic.

Top results

What is Acute Rheumatic Fever? | RHDAustralia

Acute rheumatic fever is an illness caused by an autoimmune response to a bacterial infection with group A streptococcus.

Read more on RHDAustralia website

About Acute Rheumatic Fever and Rheumatic Heart Disease

Rheumatic heart disease (RHD) is damage to one or more heart valves that remains after an episode of acute rheumatic fever (ARF) is resolved

Read more on RHDAustralia website

Acute rheumatic fever and rheumatic heart disease | The Heart Foundation

The 2020 Australian  guideline  for  prevention, diagnosis and  management of  acute  rheumatic  fever and  rheumatic  heart disease (3rd Edition)

Read more on Heart Foundation website

Acute rheumatic fever and rheumatic heart disease

Acute rheumatic fever (ARF), commonly called rheumatic fever, is the body’s immune system reacting to an untreated infection with bacteria called Group A Streptococcus (GAS).

Read more on WA Health website

Rheumatic fever - Better Health Channel

Read more on Better Health Channel website

Rheumatic heart disease (RHD) | SA Health

Information on acute rheumatic fever (ARF) & rheumatic heart disease (RHD), including diagnosis, symptoms and treatment

Read more on SA Health website

New technology helping doctors make the right diagnosis | Rheumatic Heart Disease Australia

Since 2013, the acute rheumatic fever diagnosis and guideline app has been downloaded over 8,000 times. It can be used in a variety of clinical scenarios, and gives clinicians clear guidance in diagnosing acute rheumatic fever (ARF).

Read more on RHDAustralia website

Rheumatic Heart disease fact sheet

Rheumatic Heart disease fact sheet

Read more on NSW Health website

Rheumatic Heart Disease: forgotten but not gone | Rheumatic Heart Disease Australia

This World Heart Federation video describes rheumatic heart disease as a chronic heart condition, caused by rheumatic fever, that needlessly kills and disables people living in extreme poverty. High prevalence of the disease has become a marker of poverty and an important factor feeding growing health inequities. Speakers include Jonathan Carapetis and other world experts in

Read more on RHDAustralia website

Rheumatic heart disease - Better Health Channel

Read more on Better Health Channel website

Healthdirect 24hr 7 days a week hotline

24 hour health advice you can count on

1800 022 222

Government Accredited with over 140 information partners

We are a government-funded service, providing quality, approved health information and advice

Australian Government, health department logo ACT Government logo New South Wales government, health department logo Northen Territory Government logo Government of South Australia, health department logo Tasmanian government logo Victorian government logo Government of Western Australia, health department logo