After children in the UK died from the infection known as strep A, health officials advise parents to be aware of it.
There are greater opportunities for illnesses like these to spread after Covid limitations were loosened. Over the past few weeks, there have been more cases.
Even though the majority of patients do not get very unwell, the infection’s highly contagious causative bacterium can result in serious disease and complications.
What is strep A?
Sometimes it appears on the skin or in the throat.
Many people unknowingly carry it around with no symptoms, but they can spread it to other people and get them sick.
How do you catch strep A?
Close contact and coughs and sneezes can spread it to people.
Schools and nursing facilities are two areas where outbreaks can occasionally occur.
What are the symptoms of strep A?
The majority of the time, symptoms are minor, such as a sore throat or a skin infection that is readily cured with antibiotics.
However, strep A can result in a variety of issues, some of which are more serious.
One such condition is scarlet fever, which again primarily affects young children and calls for antibiotics.
What is scarlet fever?
Health practitioners are required to alert local health protection teams of suspected cases because it is a disease that requires notification.
This enables prompt treatment and the containment of any potential epidemics. It results in a rash and flu-like symptoms like fever, sore throat, and swollen glands in the neck.
On darker skin, the rash may be harder to see, but it will still feel like sandpaper.
Due to its resemblance to a strawberry, a strawberry tongue is what medical professionals refer to as in patients with scarlet fever.
Is strep A dangerous?
Rarely, strep A can also result in an invasive group infection. iGAS or a streptococcal infection.
This might be fatal.
When the bacteria overcome your body’s immunological defences, invasive illness results. This may occur if you already have a disease or are taking medications that weaken your immune system, such as some cancer treatments.
Fever is one of the warning indications of an invasive disease (a high temperature above 38C)
acute muscular pain
Early, urgent medical assistance is crucial.
The UK Health Security Agency advised “Anyone with high fever, severe muscle aches, pain in one area of the body and unexplained vomiting or diarrhoea should call NHS 111 and seek medical help immediately.”
What to do if your child is unwell?
You should consult your doctor if you suspect that your child is exhibiting any strep A symptoms.
If you recently came into contact with someone who has strep A, let them know.
Can adults get strep A?
Yes. If they come into contact with an infected person, anyone can get it. Though most people won’t become seriously ill.
Is there a vaccine for strep A?
No. Strep A is treated with antibiotics.
What is the UK doing about it?
Following reports of an upsurge in childhood infections over the past few weeks, particularly those that caused serious sickness, investigations are currently underway.
There is no proof that a brand-new strain is currently in circulation. The large levels of circulating microorganisms are most likely responsible for the rise.
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