Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Tuberculosis and Scarlet Fever???

I suddenly feel like I've been thrust into a "Little House on the Prairie" book.

Two children that attend our day care were diagnosed a couple of weeks ago with scarlet fever. SCARLET FEVER!!???!!!

And then, last Friday, Grant came home from school and said that Darrol, one of his good friends and a fellow basketball player, is very sick with something highly contagious that Grant couldn't remember the name of. But the school had told them that they needed to tell their parents to expect a letter to arrive in the mail on Saturday, and that all the kids in the fifth grade would be tested for it. Turns out, Darrol has active tuberculosis. TUBERCULOSIS!!???!!!

I'm feeling a little awed by all of this. Fortunately, none of our children have any immunodeficiency issues that could make these illnesses a high potential for being life-threatening. IF our family should contract one of these illnesses, it will require prompt medical treatment, but we are not at high risk for serious complications. (Thank goodness!!) Not that I'm trying to ignore the seriousness of the problem, but I'm also trying to be realistic and not panic needlessly.

But still...........SCARLET FEVER AND TUBERCULOSIS??!!!??? This is 2007, right? It is both fascinating and frightening to me to see these illnesses making a comeback. WHY is this happening? HOW do we prevent other illnesses that we thought were a "thing of the past" from recurring? Are we going to see a return of the Bubonic Plague and Smallpox??

WOW! I remember thinking that you were really sick if you had strep throat......

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