Strep Throat Symptoms
Streptococcus infection (strep throat ) symptoms are related to the inflammation of the throat and surrounding tissues.
Common symptoms of strep throat are
- mild to severe sore throat
- redness and swelling of the throat
- white spots or patches on the tonsils, and...
What is strep throat?
Strep throat is a throat infection usually caused by group A streptococcal
bacteria. Strep throat is often accompanied by fever. Strep throat is one of
many causes of inflammation of the pharynx (pharyngitis). Strep throat is a
common cause of sore throat.
Streptococcus spp. are the most common bacterial
species to cause strep throat (15%-30% of pharyngitis in children and about 5 to
10% in adults).
Is strep throat contagious?
Strep throat is contagious for about 2-3 weeks in individuals that do not
take antibiotics. However, individuals that take antibiotics for strep throat
usually are no longer contagious about 24 hours after initiating antibiotic
therapy. The bacteria that cause strep throat can be transmitted
person-to-person by direct contact, especially from mucus droplets from the
mouth and indirect contact, such as kissing and sharing utensils or drinking
How do I know I have strep throat?
The incubation period for strep throat varies about 1-5 days after exposure
to the bacteria. If a person develops a sore throat and a fever, they should
consider the possibility they have strep throat, especially if another family
member or a coworker has been diagnosed with the disease. The pattern of
symptoms of strep throat are
- sore throat,
- fever (usually greater than 102 F or 38.8 C), and
- whitish or yellowish pus areas on the tonsils and throat.
Some persons with strep throat also may develop
Strep throat is often
accompanied by swollen lymph nodes in the neck.
Rarely, a person with strep throat can develop a rash.
If a person has a runny nose,
constant sneezing and coughing, it actually
is less likely that they have strep
Strep throat is diagnosed by the medical history, physical examination of the
throat, and with a rapid strep test on a swab of the throat. The rapid strep
test can be confirmed by a throat culture. However, most physicians will
diagnose and begin treatment before a throat culture test is completed.
There are many other causes of sore throat including many viruses, bacteria
other than strep, allergies, acid reflux, and tumors. Your physician can help
sort through these causes of sore throat.
Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 10/7/2016