We conduct independent population-based surveys of rheumatic heart disease and longitudinal cohort studies. We abide by high standards of study conduct, data analysis, data interpretation and publication.
We initiated a population-based cross-sectional survey of schoolchildren in Nepal in 2012, followed by a longitudinal cohort study of children with findings of subclinical RHD. In order to enable regional comparisons and to enhance the robustness of our estimations we translated the study protocol to additional sites in South America and Oceania. The prevalence of silent (subclinical) and manifest rheumatic heart disease is assessed by echocardiography and cardiac auscultation, respectively. After independent confirmation of valvular lesions consistent with rheumatic heart disease and education of both children and primary caregivers, children with rheumatic heart disease are enrolled in a secondary antibiotic prevention program and will be followed-up in regular time intervals to assess progression of disease.