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Citation Information

Type Journal Article - Medical Journal of Australia
Title Acute rheumatic fever and rheumatic heart disease in Fiji: prospective surveillance, 2005-2007
Volume 190
Issue 3
Publication (Day/Month/Year) 2009
Page numbers 133-135
URL http://espace.cdu.edu.au/view/cdu:8490/Mulholland_8490.pdf
Objectives: To determine the incidence and clinical features of acute rheumatic fever
(ARF) in Fiji, and the clinical features of patients presenting to hospital in Fiji with
rheumatic heart disease (RHD).
Design and setting: A prospective surveillance study at the Colonial War Memorial
Hospital in Suva over a 23-month period from December 2005 to November 2007.
Main outcome measures: Incidence of ARF; clinical features of ARF and RHD.
Results: The average annualised incidence of definite cases of ARF in children aged
5–15 years was 15.2 per 100 000 (95% CI, 9.0–22.6). The clinical features of ARF were
similar to those in classic descriptions. Carditis was very common, occurring in 79% of
cases. There were 103 admissions for RHD in which detailed information was collected,
with the most common reason for admission being cardiac failure (51%). The median
age at admission with RHD was 26.8 years, and there were 10 deaths of patients with
RHD (case fatality rate, 9.7%).
Conclusions: Although apparently declining in incidence since the middle of the
20th century, ARF remains a significant health problem in Fiji. RHD affects young people,
leading to premature morbidity and mortality. There is an urgent need for effective
control of ARF and RHD in Fiji

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