Strep A is on the rise in children amid a growing shortage of common medication

A dangerous form of strep A may be on the rise in children, adding another infection for pediatricians to worry about this winter.

The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention was notified in November of a possible increase in cases among children in a Colorado hospital, according to a Thursday health advisory. Other states are also reporting cases of invasive Strep A. The UK has been hit by the infection as well, and more than 20 children have died from it.

Invasive strep, caused by the same bacteria as typical step infections, is less frequent and more severe, and can lead to death in some cases. Strep A is a bacterial infection caused by the Group A Streptococcus bacteria, and is most often seen in the winter months. 

Additionally, increased rates of infection have been noted when influenza is also prevalent. Cases of seasonal influenza are currently high in the US and above the levels reported in recent years. 

Various respiratory illness are circulating throughout the US, including cases of respiratory syncytial virus, influenza and Covid. The rise in these infections this year have helped to spark a growing shortage in common children’s medication. Tamiflu, amoxicillin and ibuprofen all have been reported in short supply.

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