Streptococcal Disease (Streptococcal Sore Throat, Scarlet Fever)

CAUSE:

Group A Beta Hemolytic Streptococci

SIGNS AND SYMPTOMS:

High fever, sore throat with pain on swallowing and vomiting. Within 12 hours of onset of rash can develop. Most common in children aged 5 to 10 especially during the months of October to April.

INCUBATION PERIOD:

Time from contact to the development of signs and symptoms usually 28 to 72 hours after close contact. Incidence is highest among small children.

MODE OF TRANSMISSION:

Usually by direct or intimate contact via airborne droplets, i.e.: sneezing and coughing. Occasionally transmitted via contaminated food. Treated cases usually do not transmit after 48 hours. Untreated cases can transmit as long as 21 days.

PREVENTIVE MEASURES:

Stressing the need for bed rest and isolation from others until antibiotic treatment is effective, completing medication, hand washing and properly disposing of soiled tissues.

PERIOD OF COMMUNICABILITY:

If untreated, uncomplicated cases 10-21 days.

IMPLICATIONS FOR SCHOOL:

Exclude those with respiratory illnesses or skin lesions from food handling. Exclude student from school for at least 24-48 hours, until antibiotic therapy begins. Student must have a note from a healthcare provider to return to school.