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Strep throat
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Strep throat

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CHILDREN'S HEALTH

Ear/Nose/Throat

CHILDREN'S HEALTH

Infants

 

Causes

The cause of strep throat is bacteria known as Streptococcus pyogenes, or group A beta-hemolytic streptococcus. These bacteria are highly contagious. They can spread through airborne droplets when someone with the infection coughs or sneezes. Children can also pick up the bacteria from a doorknob or other surface and transfer them to their noses or mouths. Kitchen utensils and bathroom objects are other common sources of infection transmission.

Risk factors

Strep throat occurs most commonly in children between the ages of 5 and 15. The infection tends to circulate in late fall, winter and early spring, but strep throat peaks in the fall and spring, while viruses peak in the winter. Strep bacteria flourish wherever groups of people are in close contact. That's why they spread easily among family members, in schools and in child-care settings.

When to seek medical advice

Call your doctor if you or your child has any of these signs and symptoms:

  • A sore throat without a cold or runny nose

  • A sore throat accompanied by tender, swollen lymph glands

  • A sore throat that lasts longer than 48 hours

  • A fever higher than 39 C in older children, or any fever lasting longer than 48 hours

  • Rash

  • Severe Headache

  • Joint pain

  • Problems breathing or difficulty swallowing anything, including saliva

Sometimes symptoms can occur even after your child has finished treatment for strep throat. Call your doctor if your child develops a fever — or has pain or swelling in the joints, shortness of breath or a rash — after a strep infection. These can be indicators of rheumatic fever.

 

Strep throat > 1 > 2 > 3 > 4

 

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This information is provided for general medical education purposes only and is not meant to substitute for the independent medical judgment of a physician relative to diagnostic and treatment options of a specific patient's medical condition.
In no event will The DrEddyClinic.com be liable for any decision made or action taken in reliance upon the information provided through this web site.

 


 



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Last Modified : 03/15/08 02:20 AM