Scarlet fever, also called scarlatina, is a contagious infection that causes a blotchy, pink-red rash. It can affect people of any age but it’s most common in young children. It’s spread through the tiny droplets found in an infected person’s breath, coughs and sneezes.
Symptoms of scarlet fever usually develop within a week of being infected. Early signs of scarlet fever include:
- a sore throat,
- a headache,
- a high temperature (38.3C/101F or above),
- swollen glands in the neck
This may be followed by a rash on the body, a red face and a white or red tongue
Your GP can usually diagnose scarlet fever by looking at the rash. Treatment with antibiotics is recommended to reduce the length of time the infection is contagious, and to help speed up recovery and reduce the risk of any further problems.
Scarlet fever usually clears up within a week with antibiotics, although the skin may peel for a few weeks after the other symptoms have passed.
If you think you or someone you know has contracted Scarlet Fever, then visit your GP or call NHS 111 as soon as possible to make sure that you get it properly diagnosed and treated, so that you don’t infect others.
Parents and carers of children are able able to seek guidance from a comprehensive new advice booklet when their child becomes ill. Click on the link below: