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Understanding the symptoms of iGAS and Scarlet Fever

While we understand that parents are likely to be worried, cases of invasive group A streptococcal infection (iGAS) remain rare in Wales, and children have a very low risk of contracting the disease.

In most cases, infection with streptococcal A causes scarlet fever, usually a mild illness.

1. Treat At Home

If your child has any of the following:

  • sore throat
  • headache

Cold and flu symptoms are very common at this time of year, especially in children.

Most will have a common seasonal virus which can be treated at home by keeping the child hydrated and with paracetamol.

Your local pharmacist can provide expert advice and over the counter medicines. Useful information about self care is also available from our Help Us Help You hub.

Useful information about looking after a sick child is also available from the NHS 111 Wales website.

2. Contact NHS 111 Wales

If your child also develops the following in addition to the sore threat or headache then contact NHS 111 Wales or your GP for advice:

  • fever
  • nausea or vomiting
  • a fine red rash which typically appears first on the chest and stomach (older children may not have the rash)

3. Contact GP Straight Away

If your child has any of the following then contact your GP or get medical advice straight away:

  • is under 3 months old and has a temperature of 38C or higher, or you think they have a high temperature
  • is 3 to 6 months old and has a temperature of 39C or higher, or you think they have a high temperature
  • has other signs of illness, such as a rash, as well as a high temperature
  • has a high temperature that's lasted for 5 days or more
  • doesn't want to eat, or isn't their usual self and you're worried
  • has a high temperature that doesn't come down with paracetamol
  • is dehydrated – such as nappies that are not very wet, sunken eyes, and no tears when they're crying

Further information about fever in children is available from the 111 Wales website at


Published: 15/12/2022