A MEDICAL secretary mum has warned parents of a virus with very similar symptoms to Strep A after her son was rushed to A&E.
Stephanie Clark has issued the warning after her son Orlando was left shivering, breathing rapidly and could “only eat ice lollies” last month.
The 37-year-old, from Wrexham in Wales, was advised by her local GP to treat her four-year-old son with Calpol and ibuprofen after he developed a high temperature.
The mum-of-three later rushed Orlando to A&E after his symptoms worsened with rashes developing on his body.
Doctors discovered white spots on the tot’s tongue so took a viral swab after experiencing similar symptoms to Strep A.
He was later diagnosed with Adenovirus – a group of viruses that can infect the lining of the eyes, airways and lungs.
Orlando is now on a course of antibiotics but his appetite has not yet returned and he remains lethargic.
Stephanie remains convinced that Orlando had been presenting symptoms similar to Strep A and has now warned parents to look out for them.
Writing on Facebook on Tuesday, she said: “With all this in the news about Strep A, it’s a real concern.
“I just thought I’d let some other parents know who have kids in school with mine.
“Three weeks ago, Orlando had a raging temperature. GP said it was viral and to just work on keeping him comfortable with Calpol and ibuprofen.
“He had all the typical cold and flu symptoms, cough, snotty etc.
“After five days of common sense parenting, he was no better; he was sick in the night and woke with a rash that didn’t fade under the glass. His temperature was still over 39 [degrees Celsius].
“I took him to A&E where they found white spots on his tonsils despite him not complaining of a sore throat. They didn’t swab his throat but they did a viral swab that came back positive for Adenovirus.
“It’s a common virus in kids and can cause the similar symptoms to Strep A. I just thought it was handy for some other parents to know that it’s around the school too and to be aware of the symptoms.
“One of mine has woken up with a sore throat today and it’s hard not to go into panic mode. Likelihood is, she has caught what her brother had – it can really knock them around.
“It’s three weeks [sic] and Orlando still isn’t 100%, having the odd day off because he’s just so drained from it. Scary how poorly all of our little ones are getting.
“Now we have the added scare of Strep A too. I am not telling anyone not to get advice if their little one has symptoms because he still needed treatment and I got advice within hours of him spiking a temperature.
“Just hope it reduces some of the panic. If you Google Adenovirus, you will see they give very similar symptoms to Strep A.”
She added: “Orlando has a terrible immune system. That’s why we, by chance, saw his consultant about a week after he was admitted.
“He gave me some really good advice regarding his temperatures, using an inhaler rather than dashing for antibiotics, and always insisting on a swab for a sore throat.
“His old GP told me to avoid his inhaler as he will become dependent on it.
“He said that was rubbish and that he would rather him have the inhaler than antibiotics. He went to see his consultant the other day who was really annoyed that they didn’t swab his throat.
“They gave me a diagnosis of bacterial tonsillitis without knowing what the bacteria was.
“He told me to insist on throat swabs from the GP or hospital from now on. I think a lot of it is common sense as we all know our kids better than anyone, we know when something isn’t right.
“Just keep an eye on him. Scarlet fever is usually pretty harmless in kids, as is Strep A. Usually a dose of antibiotics is all they need – it’s the extreme cases, isn’t it?”
Social media users left comments on the post, with some saying they felt better knowing that some Strep A symptoms could be something less serious.
Nikki Valentine said: “It is scary when they are so poorly, isn’t it?”
Kirsty Roberts said: “Aw, look at him. I’m glad he’s better, Steph, little darling he is.”
Judy Claire said: “Hope he’s better soon. So much going around.”
Megan Chesterman said: “Its made me feel a bit better reading this. Finley’s been unwell since Saturday with high temp, cough, sore throat, rash, vomiting ect.
“The GP yesterday said it could be viral, could be an infection, could be the start of scarlet fever and gave us a random prescription for antibiotics – not what a worried mother needs to hear.
“Thankfully he’s better today but I had a sleepless night worrying about Strep A.”
Speaking today, Stephanie said: “He came home from school on the Monday with a very high temperature, feeling lethargic.
“I called the GP who said it sounded viral and to give him alternate Calpol and ibuprofen.
“He seemed to pick up when they kicked in, but we couldn’t go more than four or five hours without medicine.
“He was shivering, fast breathing, coughing and then after a few days he had a slightly snotty nose, his appetite gradually started to go.
“By the Friday, he was only eating ice lollies. Friday night, he was sick in his sleep and still continuing with other symptoms including a high temperature.
“When I went to wake him up the next morning, he had a rash on his chest and face that wasn’t fading.
“I took him straight to A&E. His temperature was still high when we got there and, after being triaged, the doctor on-call wanted a second opinion from the children’s ward.
“He found white spots on his tonsils and he was convinced he had bacterial tonsillitis but wanted a second opinion on the rash.
“We were isolated in the children’s ward. A doctor examined him and confirmed the diagnosis and she was convinced his rash appeared because of his cough.
“She said too much coughing causes the blood vessels to burst and cause a rash. They gave him antibiotics and a pass to come back if he got any worse.
“They did a viral swab which came back with Adenovirus. I was aware of Adenovirus as my niece was very poorly with it in April, she has a compromised health condition so she was very ill and had to be intubated.
“It was only when it came out about Strep A it made me think about the white spots on his tonsils. He has seen his consultant since who told me to always insist on a throat swab to be on the safe side.
“I didn’t realise this was an option. It took about four days for the antibiotics to kick in but even three weeks later, he’s still not got his appetite back 100% and he is still coughing and is still lethargic.
“He has had to have two days off school and was sent home yesterday, feeling poorly. But it’s all just recovering from this. I wish they had taken a swab now as he could have already had [Strep A].”