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Scarlet fever is contagious


Photo by Alan - via flickr.com under creative commons license

What is scarlet fever?
Scarlet fever is an infectious disease which commonly affects children.
 
What are its symptoms?
Symptoms include sore throat, fever and a characteristic red rash.

How does it spread?
The bacterial infection that causes scarlet fever is contagious. A child having scarlet fever can spread infection through nasal and throat fluids by sneezing and coughing.
 
How can you prevent scarlet fever?
It's always safe to keep affected person's utensils separate from other family members.

Symptoms and treatment
How to treat scarlet fever?
If your child has a rash and the doctor suspects scarlet fever, he or she will usually take a throat culture (a painless swab of throat secretions) to see if the bacteria grow in the laboratory. Once a strep infection is confirmed, the doctor will likely prescribe an antibiotic for your child to be taken for about 10 days.
 
What happens if it is not treated?
In most of the cases of scarlet fever have no complications at all.  However, if not treated there is a risk that you might contract an ear infection, throat abscess, pneumonia or meningitis.

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