Australian town has the world's highest rate of rare heart condition and it's ...

Health research has found that a small town of just 3000 people has the world's highest rate of a rare and preventable heart disease.

The Menzies School of School of Health Research released the study which showed that children in the Maningrida community, in Arnhem Land, suffer the highest known rates of rheumatic heart disease.

The Menzies school tested 400 children from the remote Indigenous community and found that one in 20 of them suffered from the disease.  

The Northern Territory's only paediatric cardiologist, Bo Remenyi told ABC News that 100 Indigenous children die from the rare disease every year. 

Menzies School of School of Health Research released a study which showed that children in the Maningrida community, in Arnhem Land, suffer the highest rates of rheumatic heart disease

Menzies School of School of Health Research released a study which showed that children in the Maningrida community, in Arnhem Land, suffer the highest rates of rheumatic heart disease

'Children with severe rheumatic heart disease usually die suddenly and unexpectedly,' he said. 

'We know children as young as four years of age have passed away from rheumatic heart disease in this community [Maningrida].' 

As a nation Australia already has one of the highest rates of acute rheumatic fever (ARF) and rheumatic heart disease (RHD) in the world.

'RHD is the most common cause of cardiac death in children and adults aged under 40 years,' the study reads. 

'However, through simple and cost effective strategies, almost all cases of RHD and associated deaths are preventable.'

The MSSHR released a statement regarding preventive measures to help reduce the number of people impacted by rheumatic heart disease.

The Northern Territory's only paediatric cardiologist, Bo Remenyi said that 100 Indigenous children die from the rare disease every year.

The Northern Territory's only paediatric cardiologist, Bo Remenyi said that 100 Indigenous children die from the rare disease every year.

'Health activities driven by remote Indigenous communities may be key to the sustainable and successful treatment and prevention of a potentially fatal disease, a study has found,' the statement read.  

The study's lead author at Menzies, Associate Professor Anna Ralph said greater focus needed to be put on the developing health crisis. 

'The challenges identified here make a clear case for investment in community-led models of care, and better preventive strategies for RHD,' she said. 

Monthly penicillin injections over the course of a decade for people in at-risk groups are recommended

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