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When is Your Throat Pain, a Serious One?

Dr. Ramneek Varma 88% (335 ratings)
MD-Internal Medicine , MBBS
General Physician, Delhi  •  41 years experience
When is Your Throat Pain, a Serious One?

Throat pain mainly occurs due to two conditions-'sore throat' or 'strep throat'. Often the terms 'sore throat' and 'strep throat' are used interchangeably, but they don't indicate the same thing. While a sore throat is a condition mostly followed by common cold, runny nose or congestion; strep throat is a bacteria-induced infection. The bacterium called Streptococcus is responsible for strep throat.

The most common reason behind a sore throat is a viral infection like flu or cold. So, if you've a sore throat that is caused by virus, there is no reason to worry as it can be treated easily. But if you are suffering from strep throat or streptococcal infection, then antibiotic drugs for additional treatment will be required to avoid complications.

Signs and symptoms of a strep throat (which indicates that your throat pain is serious and needs attention) include:

  • Pain while swallowing food
  • Sore throat which usually persists for more than 48 hours
  • Small red spots at the roof top of your mouth
  • Swollen and red tonsils at times with streaks of pus or white patches
  • Fever
  • Swollen, benign lymph nodes in your neck
  • Headache
  • Rash
  • Body aches
  • Vomiting or feeling of nausea, especially amongst younger children

When these signs and symptoms become noticeable, you need to promptly visit your doctor for test and treatment. And, if the reports indicate strep throat, then your doctor will prescribe you some oral antibiotics to reduce the complications and severity of symptoms so that it doesn't spread to others. You are advised to follow your prescription properly and stay indoors for at least a day after starting your medication.

'Consult'.

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