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Can Rheumatic Heart Disease Lead To Heart Failure?

Can Rheumatic Heart Disease Lead To Heart Failure?

Rheumatic heart disease (RHD) is a heart problem. It occurs when a streptococcal infection remains untreated, especially in places where medical care is not easily accessible. People can avoid getting Rheumatic Heart Disease (RHD), but it still affects millions of people around the world, mostly by hurting the heart valves. Even though the initial cause may seem far away, like a case of strep throat that wasn't addressed, the results can be terrible, even leading to heart failure. This blog looks at the complicated link between rheumatic heart disease and heart failure. Regarding this, the blog has been enriched with references from top-notch experts in heart failure surgery in Delhi and Mumbai (metro cities renowned for the best heart surgeons in India). 

An Overview of Rheumatic Heart Disease 

If one is unable to treat streptococcal illness, especially strep throat, the person can get down with rheumatic fever. Rheumatic fever is an inflammatory disorder that can lead to rheumatic heart disease. 

How Rheumatic Heart Disease Leads to Heart Failure?

RHD can lead to an autoimmune reaction, and as a result, systemic inflammation forms. This condition affects the cardiovascular system. Within a certain amount of time, this inflammation could hurt the heart valves, making them less able to work properly and changing the flow of blood. The most common valve to be affected is the mitral valve, but other valves can also be impacted. 

As rheumatic heart disease gets worse, the heart valves gradually lose their ability to work. This leads to heart failure. Because the situation gets worse, the damaged valves have a harder time controlling the flow of blood. Unfortunately, this puts too much stress on the heart, making it work harder to make up for the valve's reduced function. Heart failure is a disorder in which the heart can't pump blood properly to meet the body's needs. Over time, the increasing amount of effort could lead to heart failure.

Factors of RHD Cause Heart Failure

  • Damage of the Heart Valve

Heart failure is caused by a number of reasons that make rheumatic heart disease worse. At first, the damaged heart valves stop the blood from moving normally inside the heart chambers, which makes pumping less effective. This can cause fluid to build up in the lungs (pulmonary congestion) and other parts of the body, which can make it hard to breathe and cause the legs and belly to swell. If heart valve damage is diagnosed in a timely manner, heart failure can be eliminated. For this, heart valve repair replacement surgery is the most effective method. 

  • Artery Blockage

The constant stress that a broken valve puts on the heart muscle could lead to enlargement, which means that the heart muscle gets thicker. At first, this might work as a way to make up for lost heart output. Over time, though, it could make it harder for the heart to relax and fill up with blood properly, which would make heart failure worse.

Coronary Artery Bypass Surgery (CABS) is an effective way to treat artery blockage. To consider this treatment, you can schedule an appointment with Dr. Sujay Shad, renowned as the best bypass surgeon in Delhi

  • Blood Clots 

When heart valves don't work properly, they can change the way blood flows, which can make people more likely to form blood clots. These blood clots can move to other parts of the body, which can cause major problems like a stroke or pulmonary embolism. This can make it harder for people with rheumatic heart disease to get better from heart failure.

Prevention and Treatment

The best way to stop rheumatic heart disease is to treat streptococcal illnesses, like strep throat, quickly and properly. If medicines are given right away, rheumatic fever and the damage it causes to heart valves can be avoided. People who already have rheumatic heart disease need to get regular checkups, take antibiotics as a preventative measure, and make changes to their lifestyle in order to keep it under control and avoid complications like heart failure.


Rheumatic heart disease is a major cause of life-threatening health issues, especially in places where there aren't many medical resources. The initial cause, like a strep throat infection, might not seem like a big deal, but the effects could be very bad, even leading to heart failure. Understanding the link between rheumatic heart disease and heart failure emphasizes how important it is to diagnose the condition quickly, take action as soon as possible, and put in place a variety of management strategies. 

To lessen the effects of rheumatic heart disease and its complications, one should try to find and treat the reasons as well as make treatments better. To get more details, visit Sir Ganga Ram Hospital, a popular heart hospital in Delhi, and consult with Dr. Sujay Shad. 

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