Houston Family Practitioner

Strep Throat TreatmentHouston, TX

One of the main issues with strep throat is that patients are not sure how to differentiate it from a regular sore throat. Only a small fraction of people battling sore throats actually have strep throat. Strep throat is a bacterial infection that causes a sore and scratchy throat with symptoms resembling a sore throat.

Strep throat treatment is offered at Emerald Pediatric & Family Clinic in Houston and surrounding areas. When left untreated, strep throat can lead to complications like rheumatic fever or kidney inflammation. The former can lead to heart valve damage, a unique type of rash or inflamed/sore joints.

Call us to schedule an appointment and learn more about strep throat treatment.

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Understanding strep throat

Even though children are more likely to develop strep throat, it is an illness that can affect anyone regardless of their age. The most common symptoms and signs of strep throat are:

  • Throat pain
  • Difficulty or pain when swallowing
  • Swollen and red tonsils
  • Red spots forming at the back of the roof of the mouth
  • Tender, swollen lymph nodes on the back of the person’s neck
  • Fever
  • Feeling nauseated
  • Body aches
  • It is possible for a person to exhibit these symptoms and not have strep throat. This is due to the fact strep throat shares its symptoms with a few other infections and illnesses. A doctor has to test the patient specifically for strep throat. It is also possible for a person to have strep throat and not exhibit any symptoms.

    When to seek treatment

    Patients are advised to come in for an evaluation if they experience any of these symptoms:

  • Swollen, tender lymph glands accompanied by sore throat
  • A Fever
  • A strange rash accompanied by a sore throat
  • Difficulty swallowing or breathing
  • If the patient is already being treated with antibiotics, but their condition does not improve after 2 days
  • The main cause of strep throat is the bacteria called Streptococcus pyogenes or Group A streptococcus. It is a highly contagious germ that is spread through droplets infused into the air when a person with the infection sneezes or coughs.

    Strep throat can also spread through sharing drinks or food. Coming into contact with a surface that the person with strep throat touched can also spread the sickness. This occurs when an individual touches the surface and then touches their eyes, mouth or nose.

    What to expect when getting strep throat treatment

    If strep throat seems to be the cause of a patient's condition, we will perform a physical examination looking for symptoms and signs. To do so, we may recommend tests, such as:

    Rapid antigen test

    During a rapid antigen test, we will take a swab from the patient's throat. We will test the swab for antigens in the throat, while also using this to detect strep bacteria quickly. If we still do not have enough information to make a diagnosis after performing a rapid antigen test, then we may perform a throat culture test.

    Throat culture

    This involves rubbing a swab on the back of the patient's throat. The test is not painful in any way, but it can lead to some people gagging. We will then culture the sample for the presence of strep bacteria. This test can take up to two days to produce the results we need.

    Antibiotics

    Medication is the go-to treatment when it comes to dealing with strep throat. We can use medication to relieve symptoms, prevent the infection from spreading or developing complications. While some medication can even help to cure strep throat, store-bought medication is not going to do much more than provide pain relief. With prescribed medication, we can help patients receive more effective treatment.

    Antibiotics

    Oral antibiotics are usually prescribed once a patient has been diagnosed with strep throat. If administered within the first two days, the severity and duration of the infection can be significantly reduced. As is the risk of the infection spreading or developing complications.

    The patient should begin to feel better after a day or so after treatment starts. Patients should come in for an evaluation if they do not notice any improvement after the first two days taking antibiotics.

    The infection should no longer be contagious after a day of antibiotic treatment, so patients can return to their daily routine. Taking the antibiotics as prescribed is extremely important. Stopping early or failing to follow the recommended schedule can lead to complications and a reoccurrence of the illness.

    Illnesses confused with strep throat

    As we mentioned earlier, there are certain illnesses that are often confused with strep throat.

    Bronchitis

    This is an inflammation of the bronchial tubes that can be caused by bacteria or viruses. It leads to symptoms like sore throat, fever and blocked airways.

    Flu treatment

    Here is another condition that shares some of its symptoms with strep throat. The same virus that causes the flu or cold can lead to bronchitis as well.

    Common colds and other illnesses

    The are many other common illnesses like a cold that have similar symptoms with strep.

    At Emerald Pediatric & Family Clinic, we diagnose and provide treatment to people dealing with any of the diseases discussed above and many others.

    Contact Us

    Emerald Pediatric & Family Clinic is located at
    11511 Veterans Memorial Dr. Suite 300
    Houston, TX
    77067

    (281) 603-1055