Saturday, August 16, 2008

Mama Knows

What is scarlet fever?
Scarlet fever is a term used for strep throat with a rash. Strep throat is a throat infection caused by a type of streptococcal bacteria.
What causes scarlet fever?
Scarlet fever is caused by streptococcal (strep) bacteria, the same bacteria that cause strep throat. There are many different strains of strep bacteria, some of which cause more serious illness than others. The type of strep that infects the throat and causes scarlet fever is called group A beta-hemolytic streptococcus (GABS).

It started with a fever late on Sunday evening, and by Monday, Yannick didn’t want to get off the couch. His fever would subside with a dose of Children’s Motrin or Tylenol, but it would reappear every six the eight hours like clockwork.

I called our pediatrician’s office on Tuesday morning, and they said if his fever didn’t break in the next 48 hours to give them another call, but they assured me that it was probably just a little viral infection. O.k., I tried to live with that, but to be honest, I wasn’t sure. Since Yannick became sick, I wasn’t sleeping well and if I did fall asleep, I’d wake up with extreme thoughts about the boy. I’d awake worried, sad and agitated.

We kept a close eye on him, I even had him sleeping in the bed with us, and he did seem to perk up a bit, but every time we thought his fever had finally broken, he’d fall back into this listless state and then a few times he’d wake me wailing about really bad stomach pains or a bad headache. On Wednesday, Yannick’s face was covered with little bumps, rough like sandpaper, and his cheeks looked flush like he had bad sunburn. He was still eating and drinking fluids, but I knew something else was going on.

Thursday morning, Yannick awoke without a fever and said he felt good and was in great spirits. I felt better, but still wanted him to take it easy. He seemed fine for most of the day, but by late afternoon, he again complained about bad stomach pains. I gave him a few Children’s Pepto Bismal tablets, and the pain seemed to subside pretty quickly. By this time, I’m convinced more is going on and I decided to call my girl, Leslie. She’s a nurse; in fact, she’s the nurse at the kid’s school.

After detailing Yannick’s symptoms, Leslie was convinced Yannick was suffering from Scarlet Fever. WHAT??? I didn’t know folks still got Scarlet Fever and back in the 1800’s when folks did get it, didn’t they die from it? Leslie explained it really isn’t a big deal; it’s a form of strep throat. After thanking my girl, I called the pediatrician with an update of Yannick’s condition. They suggested I bring him in the next morning.

When Loverman came home, I gave him the 411. I could tell he was humoring me when I mentioned Scarlet Fever, but he agreed the boy needed to see a doctor.

The next morning, Yannick again awoke with no fever, and most of the rash on his face had disappeared, but even with this big improvement, I wanted the boy to be checked out from head to toe.

As we waited for the doctor to see us, Loverman made a few jokes about mommy and Miss Leslie’s extreme diagnosis, but when the doctor walked in the office, took one look at my boy, she too, suspected Yannick was on the up-side of a bout of Scarlet Fever.

A-Ha! I waited a moment while Loverman picked his face off the floor and asked the doctor to repeat herself. She did and went on to assure us that after a 10-day regimen of antibiotics, Yannick will be fine.

I cannot tell you how relieved I am. Last night, both Yannick and me slept like babies. I’m convinced my mother’s intuition has been on overdrive this week and it’s because of this sixth sense and insights provided by those other mothers my sisters’ circle, that my boy is now truly on the mend.


Lisa Blah Blah said...

Wow. All I know about scarlet fever is that my grandma had it when she was a kid and all her hair fell out. Your mother's intuition served you well. Glad your little guy is on the mend!

jillybean said...

Hi Mango Mama,

I had Scarlet Fever when I was young TWICE and I survived:) I'm glad Yannick and his mommy are feeling much better.

Mango Mama said...

LBB & Jillybean, See... this is why mommies have to stay in touch and I'm happy to say the boy is back in his true form. It was a heck of a week, scarlet fever is NO JOKE! Thanks for the well wishes.