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Diphtheria angina: how is it transmitted and how is it treated?

Diphtheria angina: how is it transmitted and how is it treated?

Diphtheria angina is an extremely contagious bacterial condition that is defined by the formation of skin and membranes that block the larynx, which can cause serious complications, from choking, paralysis of the palatal wave and until the death of the sufferer. It is a rare condition today that requires emergency medical intervention.

What are the causes?

Acute diphtheria angina is an inflammation of the larynx mucosa and is an infectious contagious disease. It is caused by the Klebs-Loeffer bacillus. Diphtheria angina is a type of bacterial angina. Fortunately, this disease is extremely rare today because the vaccine was invented against it.

How is it transmitted?

Besides being a bacterial infection it is also an extremely contagious disease. The source of contamination is the person who actively manifests the infection. The way of transmission is by coming into direct contact with it, both aerogens (through nasal secretions or sneezing), but also by reaching contaminated objects. The disease is usually felt in the cold season, and the incubation lasts for a little, between 2-5 days.

How is diphtheria angina manifested?

The onset of the disease is quite slow, the main signs being fatigue, drowsiness and low fever (around 38 degrees Celsius). Sometimes nausea and nausea may occur with vomiting at the onset of the disease. And sore throats are a common sign and are associated with the impossibility or difficulty of swallowing. Asthenia is a symptom associated with the condition and is accompanied by:

  • lack of appetite;
  • pallor (closed eyes);
  • tachycardia;
  • dysphagia;
  • breathy smell similar to acetone;
  • hypotension;
  • palatine tonsils moderately congested and swollen (covered by a yellow or grayish white exudate - false membranes).

It is found, after medical examination, massive laterocervical adenopathy that deforms the appearance of the cervical region. This condition is also called "proconsular neck".

Also read: Complete list of contagious diseases in young children

How is diphtheria angina diagnosed?

In addition to the objective, physical examination performed by the doctor, paraclinical tests are also used to make the precise diagnosis. These include the exudate removal from the pharyngeal secretion and the isolation in culture of the responsible bacterium.

What are the complications?

The evolution of this condition is a very serious one. Untreated or undetected early diphtheria angina can have fatal complications. The death caused by the complications of this disease occurs in 40-60% of the cases. One of them is myocardial toxicity, secreted by the diphtheria bacillus.

Myocarditis is manifested by tachycardia, low blood pressure and even collapse. Because of the false membranes that appear in the larynx, suffocation can occur, which can lead to death. Another common complication that can occur following the evolution of the disease is paralysis of the palatal wave. This is characterized by nasal speech, swallowing disorders, and elimination of fluids in the nose.

How is diphtheria angina treated?

Being a bacterial infection, the treatment necessarily includes antibiotics. The most commonly used antibiotics used to treat diphtheria angina are erythromycin and penicillin. It is also used for the administration of antifungal serum. This has the role of neutralizing the diphtheria toxin spread in the body.

Usually the patient is admitted to the hospital and closely monitored. It should be isolated from the rest of the healthy people. The best prophylactic method against this terrible disease remains the vaccine. It can be made to children as young as possible and contains diphtheria anatoxin.

Tags Bacterial Infection Contagious Diseases Vaccinates Required Children Bacterial Infection