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The common cause for little girl’s ‘strawberry tongue’

Doctors have diagnosed a little girl’s unusual “strawberry tongue” as being caused by a common ailment.

The girl, 5, from India was taken to a pediatrician following three days of fever, sore throat and pain with swallowing, according to the case published in the New England Journal of Medicine.

“She had no associated cough, rhinorrhea, or hoarseness. The temperature was 40C,” researchers wrote.

“She had fissured lips and a red tongue with enlarged papillae, an appearance referred to as a strawberry tongue.”

A girl, 5, with a strawberry tongue caused by strep throat.
A girl, 5, went to the doctor with a 'strawberry tongue'. Source: New England Journal of Medicine

Doctors added her tonsils were also “enlarged”.

“She had no rash, conjunctival congestion, oral ulcers, or splenomegaly,” researchers wrote.

“The throat culture was positive for group A streptococcus, and a diagnosis of streptococcal pharyngitis was made.”

Streptococcal pharyngitis is also known as strep throat. It is a bacterial infection which lead to the throat becoming sore and can also include symptoms such as fever.

The girl was given antibiotics and showed no recurrence of the strep throat in three and six-month follow up appointments.

Rare diagnosis sees woman crying tears of blood

It's not the first time doctors have been confronted by mysterious symptoms.

Earlier this month, a 25-year-old woman was taken to the emergency room at a hospital in India after blood was seen coming from her eyes, according to her case in BMJ Case Reports.

Doctors asked her if she was suffering any dizziness or pain to which she replied no.

“Extensive physical, ophthalmological and radiological evaluation failed to reveal other potential causes of her complaint,” researchers wrote.

At first doctors were puzzled by her symptoms, but later determined she had a rare condition called haemolacria.

The woman’s bloody tears were actually caused by menstruation.

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