Thursday, November 04, 2010

1st World Strep


Interesting observation (for me anyway).  Lucy (6) is home from school today with strep.  She complained of a sore throat yesterday morning and by the afternoon she had a high fever, a headache,  and was vomiting.  This is what strep looks like for 2 of my 3 kids.  I called the pediatrician at about 4:50 pm yesterday.  At 9:45 am she was sitting in the waiting room.

We had to sit around for about 15 minutes before we were able to be seen.  It was a hassle seeing as she was very uncomfortable and the chairs in the waiting room weren't conducive to snuggling.  Poor us.

We left the office at 10:30 and by 11:30 Lucy had gotten her 1st of 20 doses of amoxicillin.  By this time tomorrow she will be virtually symptom free.  In the mean time she is laying on the couch with a warm blanket,  sucking on a ring pop, watching her favorite tv show,  with her mom rubbing her feet/legs.

Near as I can tell,  people all over the world get strep throat.  If it goes untreated there can be serious complications. says:

What are the potential complications of untreated strep throat infection?

Possible complications of untreated or partially treated strep throat infection are:
  • rheumatic fever
  • glomerulonephritis
  • otitis media
  • meningitis
  • pneumonia
  • toxic shock syndrome (a rare but severe complication of strep pharyngitis, causing severe widespread infection and organ failure); and/or
  • abscess formation around the tonsils and behind the throat (peri-tonsillar abscess and retro-pharyngeal abscess).
Formation of an abscess behind the throat (retro-pharyngeal abscess) due to untreated or under-treated strep throat infection can lead to severe illness causing pain in throat and neck, difficulty swallowing, and potential respiratory compromise. These abscesses may need to be drained by an ear-nose-throat (ENT) specialist urgently, and hospitalization may be required.
This is not a call to arms about treating strep throat in developing countries.  On the list of "needs,"  it isn't in the top ten.  However,  it is another illustration of how big this world is,  and how all of our grumbling about common childhood illnesses is silly.
My house isn't going to get cleaned today.  Dinner will involve a shortcut.  I'll get a little frustrated by feeling like I should be doing something else.  But today I'll sit and comfort and tend to my girl.  
And tomorrow she will be fine.  How convenient is that?  I am so thankful!
I love healthcare.

I still wonder about this tyke...  and I wonder if her needs would have been met/treated quickly if she'd been born elsewhere.

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