THERE have been several reported cases of scarlet fever at a school in East Lothian.

Scarlet fever is one of the illnesses caused by bacteria known as Group A Streptococci.

Streptococci are often carried in the throat and skin, so illnesses are sore throats and impetigo, a skin infection.

The reported cases are at Campie Primary School in Musselburgh.

The school has issued a guidance document from NHS Lothian, via social media, asking parents to contact the school should they have any questions or concerns.

Symptoms include: a sore throat; fever; deep skin rash; flushed face with a pale area around the mouth; initially the tongue will have a white coating that peels off by day five to leave the 'strawberry' tongue (the tongue that is red and looks like a strawberry).

The symptoms may go away quickly after starting antibiotic treatment.

East Lothian Courier: Symptoms

NHS Lothian said: "During the winter months, more people are coughing and sneezing, and so we see this illness more in the winter.

"Outbreaks are more likely in group settings such as nurseries, schools and colleges."

Parents were told by the health body: "You should stay away from work or keep infected children away from nurseries, playgroups, schools etc until 24 hours after the start of the course of antibiotics and until the person has clinically recovered."

Further questions about the advice leaflet should be directed to the NHS Lothian health protection team on 0300 790 6264.

East Lothian Council has been asked by the Courier if any other schools are affected.