Sore Throat in Children

What causes sore throat?
Viruses cause most sore throats. Many viruses can cause sore throat, either directly or by causing drainage from the sinus area onto the back of the throat (post-nasal drip). Strep bacteria cause some sore throats.

What is pharyngitis?
This is another name for sore throat.

What is strep throat?
Strep throat is a sore throat caused by a specific bacterium called "Group A Streptococcus". Strep bacteria infect the tissues of the throat, causing fever, headache, and sudden severe throat pain. Swollen areas in the neck (lymph nodes) may arise, because drainage from the throat stimulates the immune system in the lymph nodes to fight the strep bacteria. Strep infection usually occurs during the winter and early spring. Some children with strep throat develop nausea, stomach pain, vomiting, or a rash.

How can I tell the difference between strep throat and sore throat?
The doctor must diagnose strep throat with a rapid strep test (while you wait) or a throat culture (takes 24 hours). Antibiotics are used to treat strep throat, but are not useful for most sore throats, which are viral. Unnecessary antibiotics can be harmful to your child.

Posted on Wednesday, November 7, 2007 at 12:39AM by Registered CommenterAdministrator | CommentsPost a Comment