Pharyngitis is a sore throat caused by inflammation of the back of the throat. It is one of the most common reasons for visits to family physician. Your throat may be scratchy and swallowing can be painful. Usually a sore throat is the sign of another illness, such as cold or the flu. unless you have a bacterial infection, taking antibiotics doesn’t help a sore throat. In fact, most sore throats go away in a week or less.
Signs and symptoms :
The symptoms that accompany a sore throat can vary, depending on what the underlying illness is.
Sore throat with cold:
-a low fever less than 102°F
Sore throat with flu:
-fever higher than 102°F
Sore throat with mononucleosis :
-enlarged lymph nodes in neck and armpits
-loss of appetite
Most sore throats are caused by viruses, although a few are due to bacterial infections. You can breathe in bacteria or a virus that are spread in the air when someone sneezes or coughs, or you can transfer the organisms to your mouth or nose by touching a surface with germs on them. Viruses that can cause sore throat include the common cold,the flu, and mononucleosis. Bacteria like group A streptococcus can also cause pharyngitis.
Due to various etiological factors, the client will manifest enlarged cervical node. The bacterial invasion leads to increased WBC count. The client will soon manifest fever, general malaise, anorexia, moderate throat pain. The fever will rise upto 104°C.
Risk factors :
Risk factors for pharyngitis include:
-cold and flu seasons
-having close contact with someone who has a sore throat or cold
-smoking or exposure to secondhand smoke
-frequent sinus infections
-northern European ancestry
Your doctor will check your temperature and examine your throat, sinuses, ears, nose, lungs, and neck, including feeling for swollen lymph nodes that may indicate strep throat. He or she may take a throat culture or do a rapid strep test by taking a swab from your throat. A blood test may be done to check for mononucleosis.
Preventive care :
-avoid kissing or sharing cups and eating utensils with anyone who has a sore throat, a cold, flu, mononucleosis, or bacterial infection.
-wash your hands frequently.
-dont smoke, and avoid exposure to secondhand smoke.
-Use a humidifier if the air in your home is dry.
Treatment approach :
If your doctor suspects that you have a sore throat caused by bacteria, he or she will Prescribe an antibiotic. But if your sore throat is caused by a virus, there is no medicine that will cure it.. It will go away on its own. Cool air and humidity are suggested to relieve symptoms. In the meantime, your doctor may recommend gargling with salt water and taking an over the counter pain reliever such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen. Children under 18 should not take aspirin as a pain reliever, because of the risk of a rare but serious illness called Reye’s syndrome.
-drink lots of fluids.water and warm broths are better than soft drinks
-avoid drinking alcohol
-gargle several times per day with 1/2 tsp. Of salt in a glass of warm water
-try throat lozenges
Penicillin, erythromycin is most commonly prescribed.
Nutrition and dietary supplements :
-warm liquids,such as soup or broth… Soup and warm liquids can help soothe a sore throat and loosen mucus, which in turn helps ease congestion from a cold.
-probiotics… So called “good” bacteria or politics help prevent infections in the intestines, and there is preliminary evidence that they might help prevent colds, too..
-honey…honey is a traditionally remedy for sore throat and cough
-vitamin C…. Despite the popular belief that vitamin C can cure the common cold, the scientific evidence hasn’t found that to be true. Only a small reduction in the duration of a cold has been found when some people take vitamin C supplements regularly
-zinc… Your body needs zinc for its immune system to function properly, so it has long been thought that zinc could help protect against catching a cold. But the evidence has been decidedly mixed, with some studies finding a benefit from zinc lozenges and others showing no effect…
Prognosis and complications :
-scarlet fever, which can cause fever and a particular type of rash.
-rheumatic fever, which can cause joint inflammation or damage your heart valves
-infection in the bloodstream
-respiratory arrest, particularly among children with croup