The first signs of strep throat are:
- A red, swollen throat
- Fever above 101°F
If strep is diagnosed and treated with antibiotics, the infection may progress to scarlet fever.
- Swollen glands in the neck
- White or yellow coating on the tongue
- Bright red tongue ("strawberry tongue")
- Loss of appetite
- Abdominal pain
- Body aches
Scarlet fever has a characteristic rash. Small red spots usually appear on the neck and chest within 24-48 hours after onset of the illness. This rash will spread quickly over the body to the abdomen, arms, and legs. The rash feels rough, like sand paper, and the redness blanches with pressure. There may also be flushing in the face with paleness around the mouth. Elbows, underarms, and other body crease areas may show red streaks called "Pastia's lines." In 7-10 days, the rash will peel off.
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