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Pharyngitis
 
 
Pharyngitis

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Pharyngitis

At the anterior of your neck, there's a tube connecting the back of the mouth and nose to the esophagus and windpipe. This tube or the space in it is called the pharynx and it serves as a gateway for food from the mouth to the esophagus and for air from the nose and mouth to the larynx (voice box).

When the mucous membrane lining the surface of this tube become inflamed or irritated due to bacterial, fungal, viral or other irritants the pharynx narrow. This inflammatory process may be accompanied by tonsillitis or a @ sore throat, and is referred to as pharyngitis.

What causes pharyngitis?

The causes of pharyngitis vary because of virus, bacteria, trauma and other causes. The severity and frequency of the attack is dependant on the cause of the infection. For your convenience, causes of pharyngitis are classified in tabular form:

Bacterial Causes (Persists slightly longer than viral )

  • Group A Streptococcal Pharyngitis
  • Pneumococcus
  • Staphylococcus aureus (also Bacterial Tracheitis)
  • Haemophilus Influenzae (also Epiglottitis)
  • Moraxella catarrhalis
  • Other Streptococcal species (Groups B, C, G)
  • Neisseria gonorrhoeae
  • Chlamydia pneumoniae
  • Klebsiella
  • Moraxella
  • Mycoplasma

Viral Causes
(Pharyngitis lasts 5-7 days)

  • Rhinovirus (Spring and fall, mild Symptoms)
  • Coronavirus (Winter, mild Symptoms)
  • Adenovirus (Moderate Symptoms,
    Conjunctivitis)
  • Influenza (Epidemics)
  • Parainfluenza
  • Epstein-Barr Virus (EBV, Mononucleosis)
  • Coxsackievirus
  • Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV)
  • Enteric virus
  • Reovirus
  • Myxovirus

Fungal Causes

  • Candida albicans
  • Rhinosporidium
  • Cryptococcus
  • Histoplasma
  • Blastomyces
  • Paracoccidioides

Other Pharyngitis Causes

  • Trauma (Accidents, surgery or strangulation)
  • Toxins (environmental pollutants or smog)
  • Structure fire or smoke exposure
  • Gastroesophageal Reflux (Heartburn)
  • Medication related (e.g. Aspirin)
  • Thermal Injury (Hot foods or liquids)
  • Contact stomatitis
  • Toxins (cigarette or MChemical Burns arijuana smoke)
  • Caustic ingestion

Only a qualified health specialist can determine which irritant is responsible for causing your pharyngitis. Always discuss your symptoms with your doctor to determine the cause of your condition as well as treatment options.

What are the symptoms of pharyngitis?

As already mentioned, only a qualified health specialist, with your help, can give proper diagnosis of the symptoms of pharyngitis. In most cases, symptoms of pharyngitis include a combination of the following:

  • Sore throat
  • Pain or difficulty in swallowing (dysphagia)
  • Tender neck lymph glands
  • Swollen glands
  • Headache
  • Red throat
  • Lump in throat
  • Fever
  • Swollen neck lymph glands
  • Breathing difficulty
  • Nausea
  • Pneumonia
  • Fatigue

Some of the above mentioned symptoms may represent other respiratory disorders. Careful diagnosis will help determine what underlying infections you might be suffering from. Click here for treatment options for pharyngitis.

Related topics:
  1. Tonsillitis
  2. Adenoiditis
  3. Laryngotracheobronchitis
  4. Epiglottitis
  5. Sore throats
  6. Halitosis
  7. Dysphagia
  8. Sinusitis

 

 
 
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