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Is arthritis with infection a reason to worry?

Q: My 16 years old sister has polyarthritis. What is the best treatment for polyarthritis with streptococcal infection?

A:Polyarthritis secondary to streptococcal infection can occur in two ways – either as a complex of the rheumatic fever, or as a reaction to the infection not associated with the features of rheumatic fever. Generally it has been seen that arthritis associated with this infection is not damaging, and gets resolved with the antibiotic treatment. Sometimes it becomes chronic and it is called Jaccoud's arthropathy. However, when arthritis occurs at this age of 16 years, one has to keep in the mind a more serious kind of the arthritis called juvenile inflammatory arthritis, which will need attention of a rheumatologist.

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