Post-COVID-19 Sydenham Chorea: A Case Report

José Augusto Camargo1, 2 , *, Stéfani Augustoli Morcillo2
1 Neuroscience Research Institute, Newclin Medical Clinic, Sorocaba, São Paulo, Brazil
2 Faculdade de Medicina, Pontifícia Universidade Católica de São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil

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Creative Commons License
© 2023 Camargo and Morcillo

open-access license: This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International Public License (CC-BY 4.0), a copy of which is available at: This license permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

* Address correspondence to this author at the Neuroscience Research Institute, Newclin Medical Clinic, Sorocaba, São Paulo, Brazil; Tel: +551532325385; E-mail:



Sydenham chorea, or rheumatic chorea, is a movement disorder that is more prevalent among young people, with a mean age at symptom onset between 8 and 9 years. The condition is more common in females. Sydenham chorea is associated with rheumatic fever and is considered the most common cause of acute chorea in children. We believe that the present case is worth reporting since the occurrence of Sydenham chorea as a post-COVID-19 sequela has not been described in Brazil.

Case Presentation:

We report here the case of a 14-year-old girl with symptoms of acute chorea that emerged 15 days after treatment resolution of COVID-19 (SARS-CoV-2 or severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2). Brain computed tomography (CT) and magnetic resonance imaging scans showed no changes, and the laboratory tests revealed no signs of an active infectious process. In contrast, neurological positron-emission tomography/CT showed mild glycolytic hypometabolism in the bilateral mesial frontal region. Administration of an oral anticonvulsant resulted in a marked improvement in her symptoms.


Despite major efforts of the scientific community for discovering treatments, preventive methods, mechanisms of action, and possible sequelae of SARS-CoV-2, there is still a long way to go to better understand this devastating pathological agent that has affected the global population.

Keywords: SARS-CoV-2, Sydenham chorea, Neuroinfection, Behavior disorder, Neurological damage, Public health.