Information for Parents/Carers
Awareness of Scarlet Fever and Streptococcal Disease
Whilst there is currently a heightened awareness and an increase in cases of Scarlet Fever and Streptococcal disease, we are asking parents to be vigilant for the signs and symptoms. Parents/carers of unwell children should seek medical advice for diagnosis and treatment.
Good hand hygiene and avoidance of spread of respiratory secretions (as per influenza- “catch it, bin it, kill it”) can help to prevent the spread of infection.
A Learner with scarlet fever must not attend school for 24 hours after the commencement of appropriate antibiotic treatment.
Signs and symptoms of scarlet fever - this infection mostly affects children aged under 10 years, older children are also susceptible to streptococcal sore throats but may not have the rash of scarlet fever.
Scarlet fever is an infectious disease caused by group A streptococcus (GAS) bacteria. It is highly infectious and can be caught through direct contact with an infected person or through the air via droplets from coughs or sneezes.
The characteristic symptom of scarlet fever is a widespread, fine pink-red rash that feels like sandpaper to touch. Other symptoms include a high temperature, a flushed face and a red, swollen tongue. Treatment is straightforward and usually involves a course of penicillin antibiotics.
Complications of scarlet fever and streptococcal infection
Most cases of scarlet fever cause no complications, especially if the condition is properly treated. However, complications in the early stages of the disease can include ear infection, throat abscess, sinusitis, pneumonia and meningitis.
Very rare complications include rheumatic fever, kidney damage, liver damage, bone infection, blood poisoning and toxic shock syndrome which can be life-threatening.
Invasive disease may occur without a person having had scarlet fever or sore throat first. Early signs of invasive disease include: high fever, severe muscle aches, local muscle tenderness, or redness at the site of a wound. If there are any concerns about invasive disease, then urgent medical advice must be sought.
NHS 111 Wales scarlet fever webpage
Thank you for your support and understanding
5th December 2022 16:09