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Numerous preventive measures, including isolation of the patient and disinfection of skin, throat, clothing, utensils and rooms, have been unsuccesful in the control of scarlet fever outbreaks. Failure may be attributed to ignorance of the etiologic factor and of the epidemiology of the disease. In recent years, knowledge of the pathogenesis of scarlet fever has progressed through advances in bacteriologic and immunologic research.
A mass of evidence has accumulated pointing toward a hemolytic streptococcus as the causative agent. The discovery of the production of a specific toxin by Streptococcus scarlatinae and of its antitoxin was reported in 1924 by the Dicks. The application of these discoveries evoked a rational, scientific program for controlling the disease. There is now considerable assurance that epidemics are rapidly and effectively controllable in proportion to the extent of the employment of what is definitely established and known. This knowledge provides a new method of approach
BLATT ML, DALE ML. THE CONTROL OF AN OUTBREAK OF SCARLET FEVER: A REPORT. JAMA. 1932;98(17):1437–1439. doi:10.1001/jama.1932.02730430013005
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