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March 1982

Collagen Vascular Disease Appearing as Chorea Gravidarum

Author Affiliations

From the Departments of Hematology (Dr Agrawal) and Neurology (Dr Foa), Bronson Hospital, Kalamazoo, Mich, and the Department of Medicine, Michigan State University College of Human Medicine, Lansing (Drs Agrawal and Foa).

Arch Neurol. 1982;39(3):192-193. doi:10.1001/archneur.1982.00510150062017

Chorea gravidarum is probably a form of Sydenham's chorea associated with pregnancy.1.2 The incidence of chorea gravidarum, along with that of rheumatic fever, has decreased so dramatically that most cases of chorea that appear during pregnancy are caused by other diseases, eg, systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE)3.4 or Huntington's disease.5 We report a case of chorea gravidarum that seemed to be caused by a collagen disease, possibly SLE.

REPORT OF A CASE  A 21-year-old woman, gravida 2, para 1, was hospitalized at 28 weeks of gestation on Feb 4, 1980, with involuntary movements of the right extremities. No history of rheumatic fever, joint pains, neuropsychiatric abnormality, skin rash, or long-term drug ingestion was elicited. She admitted to having a positive VDRL for the past six years, antedating any sexual contact. A history disclosed that she had two episodes of chorea. The first episode occurred in September 1978, when

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