Talk:Scarlet fever

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i had it and it kills like crazy Article has below mentioned inconsistency issues and has almost no information on treatment or the history of this disease. As also mentioned below, the disease was very virulent prior to the invention of a vaccine and appeared in numerous works of literature, ie Frankenstein. Quality level dropped to C. (talk) 15:47, 11 October 2010 (UTC)

Scarlet Fever != Rheumatic Fever[edit]

Scarlet Fever is the name for the rash that occurs due to released exotoxins from Group A strep.

Rheumatic Fever is the autoimmune disease that occurs after infection with Group A strep that causes damage to your heart valves.

--DocJohnny 22:40, 17 December 2005 (UTC)

It is not correct to state that Scarlet Fever used to be called Scarlatina. Scarlatina was believed to be a different, but similar, disease and even UK GPs believed, and diagnosed, on this basis. The 'symptoms' were much milder and recovery faster. It was later that they were identified as the same disease and the name Scarlatina dropped.

TigB (talk) 23:21, 1 April 2013 (UTC)

Virulence of Group A streps not decreasing![edit]

The virulence of group A strep seems to be increasing lately.

"Lately" is rather vague and is it true of the entire planet?

This is false. The virulence of Group A (beta Haemolytic) Streptococci seems to be decreasing globally. This is exemplified by the falling incidence of Rheumatic Fever. The theories as to why include: 1) better general sanitation and decreased infection from group A streps 2) improved management of strep infections resulting in the fever to rarely progress to either Rheumatic or Scarlet Fever 3) an unexplained decreased pathogenicity of group A streps

[Pathologic Basis of Disease, 7th Edition, Kumar, Cotran and Robbins. Chapter on Cardiovascular Pathology]


The edits you made are quite interesting and add some depth to the article, but they need to be sourced. I did remove the "They require reassurance..." sentence as it not very encyclopedic imo. --DocJohnny 06:49, 27 December 2005 (UTC)

Illness and Antibiotics.[edit]

Illness is too vague to belong on any symptom list.

Antibiotic treatment for streptococcal infections is not seriously criticized. While most people will recover without antibiotics from strep throat, antibiotics significantly reduce complications such as rheumatic fever. I can find no legitimate medical articles advocating against antibiotic usage.--JohnDO|Speak your mind 05:10, 22 April 2006 (UTC)

"School age children are most likely to have scarlet Fever, but it goes for most ages." - begging the author's pardon, but this line was coming up with incorrect formatting, and the information is not written in a clear way. Reynardo 05:09, 29 October 2007 (UTC)

Scarlet Fever in Literature Section - Beth from Little Women[edit]

Doesn't Beth in Little Women die from Scarlet Fever? This article states she recovered. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 17:06, 11 December 2006 (UTC).

I thought she died of consumption [as it was known then] or TB later on - she did not die of scarlet fever although she was dangerously ill with it. I don't recall anything as specific as congestive heart failure. Vandenwyngaerde 13:47, 6 March 2007 (UTC)

The symptoms she had were the classic progression of scarlet fever to congestive heart failure. She never really recovers from the bout she has in "Little Women", and dies 5 years later in "Good Wives". Reynardo

More technical description: Should "Group A beta Hemolytic" be added to this description? Just thinking out-loud. sgs nola66.157.38.221 20:51, 15 March 2007 (UTC)

This article should be edited so it uses less jargon; it reads like a medical book. At the least some of this jargon should be linked to a definition.

reniam Reniam 00:31, 24 May 2007 (UTC)

Does anyone else have concerns about the MANY spoilers in the Literature/culture section? I definitely had a storyline ruined for me there. Maybe a warning?? Thanks! (talk) 17:59, 13 November 2008 (UTC)

"Strawberry" tongue is not well described[edit]

One of the characterizing symptoms is given as "strawberry tongue" with the description of being bright red. The [| CDC description] says "The tongue itself looks like a strawberry because the normal bumps on the tongue look bigger. This is much more helpful to a worried parent. (Like me Jsparkes 11:29, 12 June 2007 (UTC)

I agree. The description is not clear, though I nderstood what it meant when I looked at the photo.

Slapped cheeks?[edit]

Image states "Slapped Cheek". I think this is incorrect and may be confusing to the medical community (esp medical students). Slapped cheek is typically attribured to "Erythema infectiosum (fifth disease), not Scarlet fever. Scarlet fever normally is said to be associated with sandpaper rash on the abdomen and circumoral palor. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Ksaraf (talkcontribs) 20:30, 20 November 2007 (UTC)

I agree with this contribution.It is erroneous to describe the red face of scarlet fever as "slapped cheek" as this has a different,far less serious, cause -B19 parvovirus. (talk) 13:18, 1 February 2008 (UTC)
I've adjusted caption to match description as given in the article text and remove the highly confusing mention of "slapped cheek" which of course would be mistaken for descirption of fifth disease (aka "slapped cheek syndrome"). I've also asked image author to review their image's caption.David Ruben Talk 17:58, 1 February 2008 (UTC)

I'm adding back in my image of the slapped cheeks as this was the definitive diagnostic symptom in my daughter's case. As I said in response to David's request: I think I'll leave my wording, but thanks for the discussion! At The Skin Disease Archive, when talking about Fifth Disease, they reference both rashes as being quite similar: "It is called slapped cheek syndrome because the children suffering from this disease show rosy slapped-like cheeks....It is the fifth of five common child diseases that cause similar skin rashes (measles, rubella, scarlet fever, Filatov-Dukes disease and slapped cheek syndrome)." I believe this supports the wording that both diseases have a slapped-cheek look as a possible symptom. In my daughters case, it was *the* symptom (along with the white mustache) that allowed a positive diagnosis. Estreya (talk) 21:32, 16 February 2008 (UTC)" Estreya (talk) 18:52, 10 October 2008 (UTC)

Estreya, in that case, your physician may have misdiagnosed your child. The picture shows slapped cheeks, a sign of fifth disease. Perioral pallor is seen with scarlet fever, but no pallor is seen -- that is your daughter's natural skin color. The rash of scarlet fever spares the face. The "definitive test" for scarlet fever isn't the facial appearance, it's a confirmed culture of Group A strep from the strep throat preceeding the rash. For these reasons, I am removing the picture. It is misleading to have it here, regardless of what your personal physician has told you.Danierrr (talk) 05:43, 24 May 2009 (UTC)

Eurocentric article[edit]

The article mentions "slapped cheeks" and the "white mustache" as symptoms of scarlet fever. What about symptoms on people of non-European descent? Do people with dark skin still get a "white mustache" when struck by scarlet fever? Or does the disease only attack white people? — Morganfitzp (talk) 17:05, 18 January 2008 (UTC)

I'll be the first to admit that much medical and first aid literature is deficient in this regard. It may not be entirely the fault of the authors of the article, but more a reflection on the lack of good documented medical knowledge for treating certain conditions in non-white persons. --Waterspyder (talk) 15:31, 5 January 2009 (UTC)

"Very Deadly"? gotta be incorrect[edit]

Try comparing 02:05, 31 March 2008 with 23:45, 31 March 2008. That "very deadly" thing is almost certainly wrong. -- (talk) 05:52, 4 April 2008 (UTC)

uncited and I've removed it. I've add a ref to history section which sets out some info on mortality in prior centuaries and why this might be so. David Ruben Talk 18:47, 4 April 2008 (UTC)


It may be helpful to have some epidemiological information, for example, what age groups does it strike, is it a problem in the developing/developed world, what % of people experience this at some point, etc. If I come across this info I'll add it. Imogenne (talk) 00:00, 27 August 2008 (UTC)

*Some* popular references.[edit]

Oh, I agree that the list had got out of hand. However, some reference to the frequency in which it appears, and tying that in with how prevalent it was before modern antibiotics, should be there in my opinion. A line or two such as "Scarlet fever was often used as a plot point in novels such as the Little Women series, and the Little House stories." Yes? No? Reynardo

Historical significance[edit]

Given the prevalence and morbidity of SF before the 1950s, a section on the treatment and outcome of this disease in the pre-antibiotic era would improve the article. I don't have enough expertise in the history of medicine to do this myself. Growing up in the 50s and 60s my parents still had a dread of this awful disease. -- (talk) 19:45, 5 August 2009 (UTC)


Shouldn't the possibility of diarrhea be mentioned before the "Treatment" section?

Wanderer57 (talk) 20:03, 15 September 2009 (UTC)

Rash On Face[edit]

The description at the top says the rash spares the face, and then the article later goes on to say the rash first appears on the face but not around the mouth. Please be consistent. -- (talk) 17:58, 12 October 2009 (UTC)

wow, what happened to this article?[edit]

Scarlet fever has had quite a cultural significance in the history of the world. Why has all that information been extracted from the article? Wickedjacob (talk) 06:58, 17 October 2011 (UTC)


DrMicro is continually adding in results from a primary study 50 years ago as what I believe is WP:OR conclusion about vaccines. I would like him to justify using this source as a commentary on vaccines, when at least from the abstract, vaccines aren't even mentioned. Yobol (talk) 16:43, 22 June 2012 (UTC)

The logic is simple. A vaccine cannot work unless there is a persistent immune response either cell mediated or antibody mediated. A vaccine to strepococci is not possible unless there is a persistent immune response. The Dick vaccine was developed in the 1920s and was used for about a decade. Since this has not been used in decades we have no idea if an immune response to this or any other streptococal vaccine is possible. There are very few published studies that have been done to confirm the persistence of an Ab or other response to streptococci over several decades. Because immunity to some vaccines or infections seem to wane over time repeated vaccinations are recommended for some vaccines. The hepatitis B vaccine is a case in point: rechecking the Ab levels is recommended at least once every ten years. Without this evidence in this paper suggesting that a vaccine - other than the Dick vaccine which has been proven to work - is even possible is at best misleading. This study suggests that a vaccine may be possible. Concerning the OR suggestion: this statement is misleading at best. By definition restating the significant findings of a published study is not OR. Aside from the OR statement the basis for this edit warring which has been referred is not clear. DrMicro (talk) 08:51, 25 June 2012 (UTC)
Stating that the source discusses this implication in the context of vaccine is OR. If the source doesn't we don't. Also, per WP:MEDRS, we should be using secondary sources, to establish WP:WEIGHT. Find a better source. Yobol (talk) 14:12, 25 June 2012 (UTC)
Firstly at the moment there are NO references in the section at all. There is no cited evidence to support the claim that there is on going research into a vaccine. There is no cited evidence that there are difficulties due to the number of strains. In accordance with WP policy given this lack of cited evidence I would move that this section be stricken from the article unless published sources to support these remarks can be provided.
Secondly the material relating to the patented and clinically used Dick vaccine is not mentioned in this section. Its omission from this section is curious.
Thirdly the source simply states that an immune response persists. As an persistent immune response is the sine qua non for any vaccine. Because of this any discussion of a potential vaccine development should cite evidence of a persistent immune response. Failure to cite evidence of a persistent immune response is tantamount to building an edifice on sand.
Finally "Stating that the source discusses this implication in the context of vaccine is OR." Im afraid this statement is simply wrong because it is not what I wrote. Accordingly the logic behind it seems circuitous at best. DrMicro (talk) 22:37, 25 June 2012 (UTC)
You apparently need to read the section again, because there is clearly a source at the end of it. If you want to add a discussion about the immune response and antibody persistence as it relates to vaccine, you need to find a source that explictly discusses all parts of that, with appropriate weight compared to the source, that complies with WP:MEDRS. Otherwise, there is nothing left to discuss. Yobol (talk) 23:20, 25 June 2012 (UTC)


This article needs a "Prognosis" section, like "Measles" and other infectious disease articles.--Solomonfromfinland (talk) 22:56, 14 October 2012 (UTC)

Testing section (9.1)[edit]

Could someone with more expertise in this area find out what the test is called referred to in the section in the middle of the article? I've been browsing page history for a while and it's unclear what is the correct name, as its been altered several times. (talk) 12:11, 7 June 2013 (UTC)

Regarding what I percieve to be a fallacy in the article.[edit]

The sentence below implies that plummeting deaths from scarlet fever were due to antibiotics which does not appear to be correct.

"Before the availability of antibiotics, scarlet fever was a major cause of death."

Deaths from scarlet fever were plummeting way before antibiotics were available to treat it. This decreased mortality rate was most likely due to the Sanitation Revolution from the mid-1800s into the early 1900s.

I have viewed statistics on England and Wales scarlet fever mortality rates from 1838 to 1978 from the record of mortality in England and Wales for 95 years as provided by the Office of National Statistics.

I have never edited wikipedia before and I don't want to step on anyones toes so to say, so I would appreciate any advice on the "correct" way to go about this.

Dora79 (talk) 14:47, 21 February 2014 (UTC)

Can you sequence a toxin[edit]

"The first toxin that causes this disease was cloned and sequenced in 1986 by Weeks and Ferrett" I thought you could only sequence DNA - of an organism. Surely a toxin is not an organism and does not have DNA?Billlion (talk) 17:46, 4 April 2014 (UTC)