- Your child was diagnosed with a Strep throat infection
- A doctor has told you your child probably has Strep throat or
- Your child has a positive Strep test
- Your child is taking an antibiotic for Strep throat and you have questions
- You are worried that the fever or sore throat is not getting better fast enough
Symptoms of Strep Throat Infection
- Pain, discomfort or raw feeling of the throat
- Pain is made worse when swallows
- Children less than 2 years of age usually can't complain about a sore throat. A young child who does not want favorite foods may have a sore throat. They may also start to cry during feedings.
- Other symptoms include sore throat, fever, headache, stomach pain, nausea and vomiting.
- Cough, hoarseness, red eyes, and runny nose are not seen with Strep throat. These symptoms point more to a viral cause.
- Scarlet fever rash (fine, red, sandpaper-like rash) is highly suggestive of Strep throat.
- If you look at the throat with a light, it will be bright red. The tonsil will be red and swollen, often covered with pus.
- Peak age: 5 to 15 years old. Not common under 2 years old unless sibling has Strep.
Cause of Strep Throat
- Group A Strep is the only common bacterial cause of a throat infection. The medical name is Strep pharyngitis.
- It accounts for 20% of sore throats with fever.
- Any infection of the throat usually also involves the tonsils. The medical name is Strep tonsillitis.
Diagnosis of Strep Throat
- Diagnosis can be confirmed by a Strep test on a sample of throat secretions.
- There is no risk from waiting until a Strep test can be done.
- If your child has cold symptoms too, a Strep test is usually not needed.
Prevention of Spread to Others
- Good hand washing can prevent spread of infection.