Sunday, February 5, 2012

Strep Throat Does Not Require A Throat

Well, not quite, but it certainly doesn't require a sore throat. This was our family's discovery on Friday night. My 11 year-old son had a raging headache all day, and developed a fever of 103. His stomach hurt as well, but more to the touch than nausea or vomiting. Of course the high fever was at 10:45 p.m., so I called our insurance company's nurseline. The fever, dizziness, and sore-to-the-touch-on-the-right belly indicated he should be seen right away. I have to admit I had moments in the waiting room where I wondered if we could leave although we'd already checked in...he was definitely walking better and seemed more comfortable as we waited. Can you do that? Can you leave? We didn't, and once the dr. saw him, he told us appendicitis would require a very localized right-side pain; Carter's angst was not so specific. The dr. then told us he thought Carter's breath was horrific, so he was going to test for strep. Huh?! No sore throat, no uncomfortable swallowing, no achy muscles, no visible white gunk in the back of the throat (all things I get when I get strep). You see where this is going...positive for strep! My husband's first response, "we feel pretty stupid." The nurse and dr. were very kind to tell us we shouldn't (they did just make $1,000 off our urgency, after all); it can sometimes present this way instead of the sore throat. We had the iPad with us, so I of course had to look it up while waiting to be discharged. Here's WebMD's take on strep: Not sure it would have helped. Meds are flowing, Carter is doing well, so I really can't ask for more (except maybe my $1,000 back? A $15 office copay sounds much more appealing). 

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