Children with suspected scarlet fever should contact their GP for a consultation. Once provided with appropriate antibiotic treatment pupils should be excluded from nursery/ school for the first 24 hours after starting treatment.
Scarlet fever is a common childhood bacterial infection caused by Streptococcus pyogenes or a group A streptococcus (GAS). The symptoms of scarlet fever include a sore throat, headache, fever, nausea and vomiting. After 12-48 hours the characteristic red, pinhead rash develops, typically first appearing on the chest and stomach, then rapidly spreading to other parts of the body, and giving the skin a sandpaper-like texture. Patients typically have flushed cheeks.
Infections can be spread through direct physical contact and through shared contact with surfaces such as tables, taps and handles. Good hand washing and general good hygiene practice remains the most important step in preventing and controlling spread of infection.
Children and adults with suspected scarlet fever should contact their GP for a consultation and if provided with appropriate antibiotic treatment for a diagnosis of scarlet fever should be excluded from nursery/ school/ work for the first 24 hours after the commencement of treatment.
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