A YOUNG pupil has died and another is being cared for in hospital after an outbreak of an invasive bacteria at a primary school in Surrey.

The girl who died is thought to have been a six-year old and was in Year 1 at the Ashford Church of England Primary School in Ashford, Surrey.

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The bug is responsible for 15 to 40 per cent of sore throats among children[/caption]

She is believed to have been infected with the invasive Group A streptococcal (iGAS) infection on Tuesday.

The bacteria – also known as strep throat – usually causes a sore throat or skin rash and is passed by physical contact or through droplets from sneezing or coughing.

It is responsible for 15 to 40 per cent of sore throats among children, and five to 15 per cent among adults.

The bacteria can often cause scarlet fever which can be extremely serious if not treated with antibiotics.

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FEVER SEASON

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Cases of a dangerous Victorian disease have surged in recent weeks and parents have been warned to be on the lookout for symptoms.

Outbreaks often occur in late winter and early spring, but it is a risk all year round.

The 12 symptoms of scarlet fever

According to the NHS the typical signs and symptoms include:


  1. sore throat
  2. skin infection, including blisters or impetigo
  3. high temperature
  4. headache
  5. flushed cheeks
  6. large pink or red rash on the skin, which is often itchy and feels like sandpaper
  7. swollen neck glands
  8. loss of appetite
  9. nausea or vomiting
  10. red lines in the folds of the body, such as the armpit, which may last a couple of days after the rash has gone
  11. a white coating on the tongue, which peels a few days later leaving the tongue red and swollen (this is known as strawberry tongue)
  12. a general feeling of being unwell

It affects mostly young children, and can now be easily treated with antibiotics.

However, in rare cases, it can cause complications – ranging from ear infections, to pneumonia, meningitis and rheumatic fever.

What to do if you or your child has scarlet fever

In the past, cases of scarlet fever could be extremely serious.

Thankfully, modern day instances are often mild and can easily be treated with antibiotics.

Parents are advised to book an appointment for their children at their local GP if they notice symptoms of the bacterial bug.

f diagnosed, sufferers will be prescribed a course of liquid antibiotics, which are to be taken for ten days.

Symptoms often clear up within two weeks, but there can be complications of scarlet fever.

There is a small risk of the infection spreading to other parts of the body, causing ear infection, sinusitis or pneumonia.

It’s advisable to return to your GP as soon as possible if you’re affected by headache, vomiting or diarrhoea after the initial scarlet fever symptoms have cleared up.

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