Streptococcal Infections (cont.)
Charles Patrick Davis, MD, PhD
Dr. Charles "Pat" Davis, MD, PhD, is a board certified Emergency Medicine doctor who currently practices as a consultant and staff member for hospitals. He has a PhD in Microbiology (UT at Austin), and the MD (Univ. Texas Medical Branch, Galveston). He is a Clinical Professor (retired) in the Division of Emergency Medicine, UT Health Science Center at San Antonio, and has been the Chief of Emergency Medicine at UT Medical Branch and at UTHSCSA with over 250 publications.
Mary D. Nettleman, MD, MS, MACP
Mary D. Nettleman, MD, MS, MACP is the Chair of the Department of Medicine at Michigan State University. She is a graduate of Vanderbilt Medical School, and completed her residency in Internal Medicine and a fellowship in Infectious Diseases at Indiana University.
Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD
Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD, is a U.S. board-certified Anatomic Pathologist with subspecialty training in the fields of Experimental and Molecular Pathology. Dr. Stöppler's educational background includes a BA with Highest Distinction from the University of Virginia and an MD from the University of North Carolina. She completed residency training in Anatomic Pathology at Georgetown University followed by subspecialty fellowship training in molecular diagnostics and experimental pathology.
In this Article
- Group A streptococcal infections facts
- What is group A Streptococcus (GAS)?
- How are group A streptococcal (GAS) infections contracted?
- What diseases are caused by group A streptococcal infection?
- What are the symptoms and signs of GAS infections?
- What is invasive group A streptococcal disease? Who is most at risk for getting invasive GAS disease?
- What are the symptoms and signs of necrotizing fasciitis?
- What are the signs and symptoms of toxic shock syndrome (TSS)?
- How are group A streptococcal (GAS) infections diagnosed?
- What is the treatment for invasive group A streptococcal disease?
- What complications are seen with group A streptococcal infections?
- Can group A streptococcal infections be prevented?
- What is the prognosis for group A streptococcal infections?
- Where can people find more information about group A streptococcal infections?
What are the symptoms and signs of GAS infections?
GAS infections can produce many different signs and symptoms:
- Pharyngitis (strep throat/tonsillitis): sore throat, irritation with swallowing, white patches on tonsils (exudates), swollen lymph nodes on the neck, fever; pharyngitis with fever and white patches on tonsils are important but not definitive signs of GAS pharyngitis.
- Scarlet fever: pharyngitis symptoms (see above), pastia (pink or red lines formed of confluent petechiae, which are small purple or red spots in the skin caused by minor blood vessel breaks) that are found in skin creases, especially the flexor surface of the elbow), fever, rash on neck and chest, then entire body with sandpaper texture, muscle aches, abdominal pain, swollen red tongue (strawberry tongue)
- Rheumatic fever: inflammation of the joints, heart valve damage
- Glomerulonephritis: inflammation of the kidneys, impaired kidney function
- Necrotizing fasciitis: tissue destruction that progresses rapidly
- Toxic shock syndrome: rapidly progressing organ failure with low blood pressure
Most of the diseases listed here for GAS infection usually occur after an initial pharyngitis, with necrotizing fasciitis and toxic shock sometimes occurring without a detectable initial pharyngitis infection. Other disease processes involving GAS organisms (for example, meningitis, bone infections, pneumonia, wound infections, and others) produce the typical symptoms associated with these disease processes and clinically are not unique for GAS or other pathogenic organisms.
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