In the Goldendale community, Klickitat Valley Health (KVH) is reporting an unusually high number of strep throat cases in the past year. Even more alarming is the number of recurring patients being treated for strep.
Strep throat is a contagious bacterial infection that can cause pain and inflammation in the throat. While most cases of this illness are not life threatening, left untreated, strep can lead to other more serious health issues.
However, KVH is expressing their concerns because strep throat is not normally recurrent in patients. They are working closely with Clark County and the Washington State Healthcare Associated Infection program to get a better understanding of why there have been so many recurring cases of this bug recently.
In some case, the illness is reported to be extremely resistant to treatment. It took weeks and different rounds of antibiotics to cure some patients. Luckily, strep is not an illness that can easily be caught. Experts say that generally, person has to come in direct contact with respiratory droplets, which allows the transfer of bacteria.
Strep throat is caused by streptococcal bacteria, which causes a severe sore throat, but can be treated with antibiotics. The infection mainly occurs in children between the ages of five and 15, and is very unlikely to be seen in children under the age of three.
Symptoms of strep throat can include:
- Swollen lymph nodes
- Fever over 101
- Severe sore throat
- Red spots on the roof of the mouth
- White patches on tonsils
- Upset stomach
- Body aches
It’s important to treat strep throat quickly. A rapid strep test is done by swabbing the back of the throat, but sometimes a second swab test is required for accuracy. If the patient tests negative the first time, an addition test is done and the swab is sent to a lab to test for the presence or lack of bacteria.
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Once a person has been diagnosed with strep throat, they will be prescribed antibiotics to treat the symptoms while the infection clears. Read more on fpc recert. Additional things that help relieve pain are possibles, tea, and soup. Infected patients should ensure the antibiotics begin working before returning to school or work to reduce the risk of spreading the infection.