What's Going Around

We begin in Albion, where Dr. Miranda Makulski with Allegiance Family Medicine is treating scarlet fever.

It starts with a rash that shows up as tiny red bumps on the chest and stomach, and can spread to the whole body.

Other symptoms include: a flush face with a pale area around the lips, a red sore throat, fever of 101 degrees or higher, swollen glands in the neck, a whitish coating on the tongue, nausea, vomiting, headache and body aches.

The tongue itself looks like a strawberry.

If you think your child has scarlet fever, take him or her to see a doctor.

Kids should stay home until their fever has gone away, or they've been on an antibiotic for up to 24 hours.

Warm liquids like soup or cold foods like Popsicles can help ease the pain of a sore throat.

Drink a lot of fluids, and take Ibuprofen for pain or fever.

In Okemos, Dr. James Brouillette at Meridian Pediatric Associates, a partner of Ingham Regional Medical Center, is treating poison ivy.

Poison ivy is characterized by a blistery, oozing red rash that often shows up in lines or streaks, and is marked with fluid-filled blisters.

Serious symptoms include: swelling of the face, mouth, neck, genitals or eyelids, or widespread large blisters that ooze large amounts of fluid.

Wash the area with soap and water immediately after contact.

Use wet compresses, take cool baths, and use over-the-counter hydro-cortisone cream to relieve symptoms.

You should see a doctor if the poison ivy is on your face or over a significant part of your body.

Contrary to popular belief, itching won't spread the poison ivy rash, but it can result in scarring or a secondary bacterial infection, especially if your hands aren't clean.

Without treatment, the rash usually lasts from about 10 days to three weeks.


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