Sore throat

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Sore throat
Pharyngitis.jpg
Viral pharyngitis, the most common cause of a sore throat.
SpecialtyOtorhinolaryngology

Sore throat, also known as throat pain, is pain or irritation of the throat.

It is usually caused by pharyngitis (inflammation of the throat) or tonsillitis (inflammation of the tonsils). It can also result from trauma.

About 7.5% of people have a sore throat in any three-month period.[1]

Definition[edit]

A sore throat is pain anywhere in the throat.[2]

Differential diagnosis[edit]

A sore throat is usually from irritation or inflammation. The most common cause (80%) is acute viral pharyngitis, a viral infection of the throat.[2] Other causes include other infections (such as streptococcal pharyngitis), trauma, and tumors.[2] Gastroesophageal (acid) reflux disease can cause stomach acid to back up into the throat and also cause the throat to become sore.[3] In children streptococcal pharyngitis is the cause of 37% of sore throats.[4]

Management[edit]

Pain medications such as non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) and paracetamol (acetaminophen) help in the management of pain.[5][6] The use of corticosteroids seems to increase the likelihood of resolution and reduce the level of pain.[7][8] Antibiotics shorten the duration of pain symptoms by an average of about one day.[9]

There is an old wives tale that having a hot drink can help with common cold and influenza symptoms, including sore throat, but there is only limited evidence to support this idea.[10] If the sore throat is unrelated to a cold and is caused by for example tonsillitis, a cold drink may be helpful.[11]

There are also other medication like lozenges which can help people to cope with a sore throat.

Without active treatment, symptoms usually last two to seven days.[12]

Epidemiology[edit]

In the United States there are about 2.4 million emergency department visits with throat-related complaints per year.[2]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Jones, Roger (2004). Oxford Textbook of Primary Medical Care. Oxford University Press. p. 674. ISBN 9780198567820.
  2. ^ a b c d Marx, John (2010). Rosen's emergency medicine: concepts and clinical practice (7th ed.). Philadelphia, PA: Mosby/Elsevier. p. Chapter 30. ISBN 978-0-323-05472-0.
  3. ^ "Sore Throat and Other Throat Problems-Topic Overview".
  4. ^ Shaikh N, Leonard E, Martin JM (September 2010). "Prevalence of streptococcal pharyngitis and streptococcal carriage in children: a meta-analysis". Pediatrics. 126 (3): e557–64. doi:10.1542/peds.2009-2648. PMID 20696723.
  5. ^ Thomas M, Del Mar C, Glasziou P (October 2000). "How effective are treatments other than antibiotics for acute sore throat?". Br J Gen Pract. 50 (459): 817–20. PMC 1313826. PMID 11127175.
  6. ^ Hayward, G; Thompson, MJ; Perera, R; Glasziou, PP; Del Mar, CB; Heneghan, CJ (Oct 17, 2012). Thompson, Matthew J (ed.). "Corticosteroids as standalone or add-on treatment for sore throat". Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews. 10: CD008268. doi:10.1002/14651858.CD008268.pub2. PMID 23076943.
  7. ^ Hayward, Gail; Thompson, Matthew J; Perera, Rafael; Glasziou, Paul P; Del Mar, Chris B; Heneghan, Carl J (2012-10-17). "Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews". Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews. 10: CD008268. doi:10.1002/14651858.cd008268.pub2. PMID 23076943.
  8. ^ Sadeghirad, Behnam; Siemieniuk, Reed A C; Brignardello-Petersen, Romina; Papola, Davide; Lytvyn, Lyubov; Vandvik, Per Olav; Merglen, Arnaud; Guyatt, Gordon H; Agoritsas, Thomas (20 September 2017). "Corticosteroids for treatment of sore throat: systematic review and meta-analysis of randomised trials". BMJ. 358: j3887. doi:10.1136/bmj.j3887. PMC 5605780. PMID 28931508.
  9. ^ Spinks, Anneliese; Glasziou, Paul P.; Del Mar, Chris B. (2013-11-05), "Antibiotics for sore throat", The Cochrane Library, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd (11), pp. CD000023, doi:10.1002/14651858.cd000023.pub4, PMID 24190439
  10. ^ "Hot drinks ease cold and flu". National Health Service. 10 December 2008.
  11. ^ Bathala S, Eccles R (March 2013). "A review on the mechanism of sore throat in tonsillitis". J Laryngol Otol (Review). 127 (3): 227–32. doi:10.1017/S0022215112003003. PMID 23317998.
  12. ^ Thompson, M; Vodicka, TA; Blair, PS; Buckley, DI; Heneghan, C; Hay, AD; TARGET Programme, Team (Dec 11, 2013). "Duration of symptoms of respiratory tract infections in children: systematic review". BMJ (Clinical Research Ed.). 347: f7027. doi:10.1136/bmj.f7027. PMC 3898587. PMID 24335668.

External links[edit]

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External resources