Treatment of acute rheumatic fever and acute rheumatic heart disease

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      The treatment of acute rheumatic fever and acute rheumatic heart disease with failure was discussed in this morning's seminar. The efficacy of chemotherapy in the prevention of rheumatic recurrences was questioned. Massive salicylate therapy for acute rheumatic fever was considered effective in changing the course of rheumatic polyarthritis and early carditis. The benefits derived from sanatorium type of care for the protracted case of rheumatic disease were described and the principles underlying the aims of this type of care were delineated. Digitalis in the treatment of acute rheumatic carditis with failure was considered of limited value. Finally, the use of high concentrations of oxygen in the treatment of acute carditis was discussed. It was pointed out that while oxygen therapy may not influence the duration of rheumatic activity, it seems to lessen the cardiac disability resulting from carditis. Some of the physiologic principles responsible for the salutory effects of oxygen therapy were presented.
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