Poststreptococcal reactive arthritis

Curr Opin Rheumatol. 2000 Jul;12(4):306-10. doi: 10.1097/00002281-200007000-00013.


The occurrence of an entity designated poststreptococcal reactive arthritis (PSReA) has been highlighted in recent reports. The syndrome was considered part of the spectrum of acute rheumatic fever by some, whereas others stressed the differences between the two diseases. As distinct from acute rheumatic fever, PSReA is characterized by a shorter latency period between the inciting streptococcal infection and the onset of arthritis, a higher frequency of involvement of the small joints and axial skeleton, poor response to aspirin and other nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, a protracted course of arthritis, a low incidence of carditis, and absence of other major manifestations of acute rheumatic fever. Recent studies have demonstrated an increased frequency of DRB1*01 in patients with PSReA, which contrasts with the increased frequency of DRB1*16 in rheumatic fever. Because 6% of patients with PSReA have been reported to have late onset carditis, it is judicious to recommend that patients with PSReA receive prophylactic antimicrobials for a minimum period of 5 years or until the age of 21 years, whichever is longer.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Alleles
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents, Non-Steroidal / therapeutic use
  • Antibiotic Prophylaxis
  • Arthritis, Juvenile / pathology
  • Arthritis, Reactive / drug therapy
  • Arthritis, Reactive / microbiology*
  • Arthritis, Reactive / pathology
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • HLA-DR Antigens / genetics
  • HLA-DRB1 Chains
  • Humans
  • Penicillins / therapeutic use
  • Streptococcal Infections / drug therapy
  • Streptococcal Infections / microbiology*
  • Streptococcal Infections / pathology
  • Streptococcus pyogenes / pathogenicity*
  • Syndrome


  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents, Non-Steroidal
  • HLA-DR Antigens
  • HLA-DRB1 Chains
  • Penicillins