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A bacterial infection has already killed 30 children in the UK

They report deaths and in France, the Netherlands and the USA

In the UK, the number of people dying from bacterial infections caused by strep, which are generally not severe, continues to rise. Health officials said at least 30 children have died since September, an unusually high number since in previous years there were only a few cases a year. They believe that the high death rate is due to social isolation during the pandemic, which prevented the babies from encountering the bacteria in time and building up immunity.

In addition, some doctors continue to refrain from prescribing antibiotics until they have certain evidence that it is a bacterial infection, making it difficult to fight the infection in time. In some cases, it leads to scarlet fever or a life-threatening invasive strep infection when it overcomes the body’s defenses and enters the blood, lungs or muscles. Then its treatment becomes more difficult, and in some cases impossible.

There are now 33,836 cases of scarlet fever in Britain, up from around 4,600 a year before the pandemic. About 100 adults have also died from the invasive form of the bacterial infection. Dr Obage Edegere of the British Health Agency said he understood parents’ concerns about the increasing number of deaths, but they were rare. Group A strep infections are easily treated with antibiotics, he said, and those infected rarely become more seriously ill.

“In winter, many diseases circulate that can worsen children’s health, so it is important to avoid contact with other people if you feel sick, wash your hands regularly and carefully cover your coughs and sneezes with a tissue,” advises the doctor. Also, parents should seek immediate medical attention if they fail to bring down their child’s temperature with medication, they refuse to eat, feel tired, have a sore throat and swollen lymph nodes.

After Britain and other countries began to report deaths of children as a result of streptococcal infection. There are two each in the USA and France, and in the Netherlands there are 7, writes “Washington Post”. The American newspaper says that health experts are checking all the deaths to find out why the bacterial infections are making people so sick. They suspect that it may be a combination of a viral infection that upsets the immune system and it cannot deal with a subsequent strep infection, even with the help of antibiotics. Dr. James Versalovic of Texas Children’s Hospital says many of the severely affected toddlers they have had current or recent viral infections, but it’s too early to rule out other factors. “It is possible that immune patterns have changed during the pandemic and that we have become more vulnerable to streptococci A. It could be a combination of factors. “Nobody knows for sure why this is happening,” Versalovic points out.

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