Strep toxic shock syndrome

Patient

Q: After having strep toxic shock syndrome last September my son has had several bouts of asymptomatic strep infections, could these be related and the strep infection was never really gone?

Doctor

A:   I realize how concerned you are about your son’s strep infections. The most probable cause of his Toxic Shock Syndrome might have been caused by Group A Strep.
Group A strep usually causes relatively mild illnesses, such as streptococcal sore throat (strep throat) and streptococcal skin infections (impetigo). Group A strep can also cause more serious illnesses such as scarlet fever, rheumatic fever, postpartum fever, wound infections, and pneumonia. Streptococcal toxic shock syndrome, another type of rapidly progressing strep infection, causes a dangerous drop in blood pressure, shock, and damage to the kidneys, liver, and lungs. As in necrotizing fasciitis, the toxin damages the tissues and organs so quickly that treatment is difficult and often too late.
In my opinion the recent Strep infections that your son had, might have been caused by opportunistic infections and might not had relation with the previous Toxic Shock Syndrome. I would suggest you to Wash his hands thoroughly and often with soap and warm water, especially after coughing and sneezing, before preparing foods, and before eating. Keep all wounds clean, and watch for possible signs of infection: rapidly increasing redness, swelling, drainage, and pain at the wound site.

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