The UK is suffering from a massive scarlet fever outbreak as hundreds of cases of the disease had been recorded across England and Wales in recent weeks. Scarlet fever is an infectious disease which was most prominent in the Victorian era.
Scarlet fever is mostly a childhood disease seen in those aged between 2 and 8 years old. The dangers of scarlet fever are much less severe in modern days but don’t panic as you can treat scarlet fever with antibiotics.
There were 480 cases of scarlet fever in the week ending the 1st of December according to health officials. The North West saw the highest number of scarlet fever cases with 105 recorded. Yorkshire and the Humber with 53 and East Midlands saw 59. Across London 54 cases in scarlet fever have been recently diagnosed with another 36-in out of London according to Health officials.
Between the 18th of November and the 24th of November, there were 419 cases recorded nationwide.
This compares to 281 cases of scarlet fever in England and Wales recorded in the week ending the 3rd of November. It is not unusual to see a spike in the number of documented cases of scarlet fever at this time of the year. It is a very seasonal disease.
A Public Health England spokesman said the number of cases of scarlet fever had risen significantly since 2014 with between 15,000 and 30,000 cases of scarlet fever being diagnosed across England each year. Health officials had previously recorded a significant rise from 2013. There were 4366 cases of scarlet fever compared to 17,829 three years later.
Almost all cases of scarlet fever occur in those children aged under the age of 10; however, a 10-day course of antibiotics will treat the disease.
Scarlet fever is a highly contagious infection which is spread by close contact with somebody already carrying a bacteria. It can take up to 5 days to develop the symptoms after the exposure. These symptoms include high temperature usually of about 38c or above and a sore throat with swollen neck glands. A Bright red rash will develop a few days later.
The British Medical Journal noted the rate of scarlet fever in England had reached the highest point of 50 years.