What’s Going Around: Viral illnesses, ear infections, strep throat, poison ivy


Penn Medicine Lancaster General Health Physicians Roseville Pediatrics reports viral illnesses, inner ear infections, swimmer’s ear, croup and bronchiolitis.

Dr. Joan Thode offered the following advice about swimmer’s ear:

“The ear canal connects the outside world to the outer surface of the ear drum, though the ear drum completely seals off the ear canal from the inner ear. Water from pools that sits in the canal can create a wet environment in a warm area that makes it easier for bacterial or even fungal infections able to grow.

An infection in the outer ear will result in ear pain that worsens when the outer ear is touched or pulled. There can sometimes be a thick ear discharge that frequently has a bad odor, though the symptom that diagnoses otitis externa is the pain.

Trying to keep the ears dry after swimming is important. External ear pain that persists for more than a couple days should be evaluated by a doctor as antibiotic or antifungal ear drops may be indicated. Ear discharge should also always be evaluated by a doctor.”

WellSpan Pediatric Medicine Physicians across Central Pa. are seeing the typical summer activities resulting in a few more bumps, bruises and breaks. They are also seeing poison ivy, sinus and allergy related issues and several cases of strep throat.

UPMC Children’s Community Pediatrics in York and Spring Grove is mostly seeing a viral syndrome, with congestion and fever, and an occasional cough complaint.

Coughs can be from postnasal drainage, which can be caused by allergies, colds, or sinus infections. But, in some cases, a prolonged cough can also be from a lung infection like pneumonia. The only way for your doctor to know is to listen to your child’s lungs. If your child’s cough lasts longer than two weeks or if is associated with wheezing or trouble breathing, you should have them seen by their provider. Cough medicines are not recommended for young children, but your provider may have some safe alternatives to offer such as a cool mist humidifier, honey for children over a year old, clearing nasal mucous, and sleeping on an extra pillow for children over two. Contact your child’s provider before trying any treatments.

The CVS MinuteClinic in York reports sinus infections, ear infections, poison ivy and allergies this week.

This week, pediatricians at Penn State Health Children’s Hospital are seeing patients with summer colds and upper respiratory viruses, and few COVID-19 cases.

Pediatricians at Penn State Health Medical Group locations in Cumberland County are seeing bug bites, strep throat, poison ivy, poison oak and viral upper respiratory infections.

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