Scarlet fever is an infectious disease that is caused by beta-hemolytic streptococcus group A. The bacteria produce a toxin which is due to the development of rash units. Not all streptococci produce this toxin, however, and not all children are sensitive to it. The primary bacterial infection most commonly affects the throat and tonsils. In rare cases, scarlet fever develops against the backdrop of skin infection such as impetigo. The most commonly affected children from 3 to 10 years of age.
What are the symptoms?
The rash is the most specific symptom of the disease. Beginning usually look like sunburn can be itchy and the skin is roughened. It starts from the face and neck, remains unaffected area around the mouth. It spreads to the chest and back, and then to the rest of the body. In crook of the elbows and armpits appear typical red lines. Typical rash that fade when pressed. After the sixth day from the beginning he regressed, after passing the affected skin begins to peel. This continued for about 10 days. Besides the rash are available and other symptoms that help in diagnosis. They include severe sore throat, fever (over 38.3 ° C), swollen cervical lymph nodes. Tonsils and pharynx are very haemorrhagic, swollen and can be covered with whitish pus deposits.
At the beginning of the infection the tongue can also be covered with a thick white coating, but then acquires characteristic raspberry color. Other symptoms may include chills, sore joints and muscles, vomiting, loss of appetite. Fever passes for 3 to 5 days after the start of the rash and pus angina goes away shortly thereafter.
How is it diagnosed?
If your doctor suspects for scarlet fever, proceed to examination of throat swabs. He sows a special broth placed in a thermostat that provides conditions similar to those in humans. After a certain time is monitored for the presence of growth of pathogenic streptococci bacteria. The disadvantage of the method is that it takes several days to establish the result. The advantage is that it brings an important informative value which groups antibiotics relevant bacteria are sensitive. There are rapid strep tests that give a result in 10 minutes. However, they do not show the sensitivity of bacteria to antibiotics groups.
What is the treatment?
It includes antibiotic therapy, which lasts 10 days. First choice are antibiotics penicillin – amoxicillin and ampicillin, usually reinforced with clavulanic acid or sulbactam.
What are the complications?
When properly conducted treatment they develop relatively rare. Late complications occur several weeks after ill health and include development of glomerulonephritis, rheumatism, arthritis. They are due to unlock the autoimmune reaction under the action of the bacteria produced by the toxin.
What is the prevention of disease?
The infection is easily transmitted from person to person. This happens droplets by sneezing and coughing. When skin streptococcal infection mechanism of transmission is contact.
What are caring for a child with scarlet fever?
The presence of strong sore throat and severe purulent tonsillitis creates difficulties in swallowing. In this case it is preferably a pasty or liquid foods. To relieve complaints can pomnognat and herbal teas that have anti-inflammatory effect. The child should take sufficient amount of fluids to avoid the risk of dehydration. Anti-inflammatory medications such as paracetamol and ibuprofen also come in handy to relieve the complaints.