Strep Throat

(Bacterial Sore Throat)

Definition

Strep throat is a type throat infection that causes a sore throat. Although the term is commonly used, very few sore throats are strep throat.
Sore Throat Due to Inflammation
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Causes

Strep throat is caused by specific bacteria. The bacteria enter through inhaled air droplets and grow in the throat causing the infection and symptoms.The strep bacteria is spread by airborne droplets, most often from coughs or sneezes of infected people or touching a contaminated surface then touching your eyes, nose, or mouth.

Risk Factors

Strep throat is more common in children and adolescents. Other factors that increase your chance of strep throat include:
  • Exposure to family member or friend who has strep throat
  • Crowded living situations
  • Having strep living in the throat—occurs in 15% to 30% of people

Symptoms

Strep throat may cause:
  • Red, sore throat with white patches
  • Headache
  • Swollen, sore glands in the neck
  • Fever
  • Red spots on the roof of the mouth
  • Painful, difficult swallowing
  • Chills
  • Fatigue
  • Nausea and possibly vomiting
  • Decreased appetite
  • Rash
  • Muscle aches, especially in the neck, and abdominal pains, especially in younger children
  • Swelling in back of mouth
Complications of untreated strep throat can be serious and include: Post-streptococcal glomerulonephritis is also rare, but it can occur, even with treatment

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