Norton Healthcare providers see rise in strep throat cases

Published: May. 21, 2023 at 9:08 AM CDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - Strep throat is more than making a comeback, it’s on the rise across the country.

Doctors in Louisville are seeing an uptick in strep cases and have some advice for people who are starting to feel that tickle in their throats.

Nurses at the Norton Prompt Care at Walgreens locations said they’ve seen more people coming into the clinics with symptoms. They chalked that up to a return to normal activities.

For years, COVID knocked the number of strep cases down by more than 25%, especially the more severe group A category.

So far in 2023, the CDC said the number of strep cases has exceeded pre-pandemic levels in several age groups. Norton Children’s has treated more patients for strep throat than all of 2022.

School-aged children are at the highest risk, but nurses say parents can and will get infected too.

This is why they encourage anyone to pay attention if they feel a sore throat coming on.

”The majority of sore throats are actually caused by viral infections, so it is good to see a doctor to differentiate between whether you have strep or a viral infection,” Amanda Brown said.

Brown is a nurse practitioner at Norton Prompt Care at Walgreens on Dixie Highway.

“It’s important to get on antibiotics because one- it’s going to make you feel better faster and possibly reduce the severity of your symptoms. But also, it’s going to make you less contagious to others.”

Brown said people with strep who get an antibiotic aren’t considered contagious after roughly the first 24 hours.

Without antibiotics, she says it’s possible to remain contagious for up to several weeks.

Symptoms of strep throat can include much more than just a sore throat.

Other symptoms include fever, stomach ache, swollen neck glands and inflamed tonsils.