1. Central

Drop in new scarlet fever cases in the East Midlands

Latest figures show a decline in the number of new cases of scarlet fever being recorded weekly in the East Midlands.

View all 8 updates ›

Hundreds fall ill as scarlet fever cases soar in Midlands

More than 1,260 cases of scarlet fever have now been reported in the East Midlands - eight times the number of cases seen in the same period last year.

Between January and April 2013, a comparatively low 150 cases were treated.

A distinctive pink-red rash is one of the symptoms of scarlet fever. Credit: ITV News Central

Scarlet fever is considered to be rare in the UK nowadays, with usually only around 2,000 and 4,000 cases reported each year across the country.

However, since the start of the year, there has been a surge in the number of cases seen in the East Midlands.

The rash feels like sandpaper to touch and can be itchy. Credit: ITV News Central

Scarlet fever is an extremely contagious bacterial infection, which can be transmitted via airborne droplets or by skin-to-skin contact.

Most cases nowadays are mild and easily treatable with antibiotics.

More on this story