Pharyngitis In Adults - Symptoms And Treatment Of Pharyngitis In Adults

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Video: Pharyngitis In Adults - Symptoms And Treatment Of Pharyngitis In Adults

Video: Pharyngitis In Adults - Symptoms And Treatment Of Pharyngitis In Adults
Video: Strep throat (streptococcal pharyngitis)- pathophysciology, signs and symptoms, diagnosis, treatment 2023, March
Pharyngitis In Adults - Symptoms And Treatment Of Pharyngitis In Adults
Pharyngitis In Adults - Symptoms And Treatment Of Pharyngitis In Adults

Symptoms and treatment of pharyngitis in adults

Pharyngitis in adults is inflammation of the mucous membrane that lines the back of the throat. The pathological process can be both acute and chronic, most often it is of a viral nature, although bacterial damage is possible. In parallel, tonsillitis is often found in patients.

Pharyngitis manifestations are diverse and largely depend on the form of the disease. Common clinical signs are considered to be sore throat and sore throat, cough, fever. Pharyngitis must be treated in a timely manner, since it threatens the development of very serious complications, including rheumatism of the heart and joints.


  • Pharyngitis reasons
  • Pharyngitis symptoms
  • Complications and consequences of pharyngitis
  • Pharyngitis diagnostics
  • How is pharyngitis treated?
  • Specific treatment for chronic pharyngitis in adults
  • Which doctor should I contact with pharyngitis?
  • Answers to popular questions:

    • Is pharyngitis contagious to others?
    • Can pharyngitis be completely cured?
    • Is there a temperature with pharyngitis?
    • Could there be a cough with pharyngitis?

Pharyngitis reasons


The causes of pharyngitis are diverse, among them are:

  • Damage to the mucous membrane of the pharynx with viruses. This is one of the most common causes of inflammation, which provokes pharyngitis in 70% of cases. The causative agents can be rhinoviruses, adenoviruses, parainfluenza and influenza viruses, coronavirus, cytomegalovirus. Often, a viral disease with inadequate and untimely treatment leads to the multiplication of the bacterial flora;
  • The defeat of the mucous membrane of the pharynx by bacteria. Most often, streptococci cause pharyngitis in adults;
  • Damage to the mucous membrane of the pharynx by mycotic microorganisms. Fungal pharyngitis develops most often in patients with a weakened immune system, or if prolonged antibiotic therapy was carried out. Treatment with inhaled or systemic glucocorticoids, diabetes mellitus, immunodeficiency negatively affects;
  • Perhaps the development of inflammation in the pharynx against the background of allergic reactions;
  • Sometimes an injury to the pharynx becomes a provoking factor for pharyngitis. It can be obtained during surgery or when a foreign body enters the throat;
  • Various alkalis and acids trapped in the pharynx can injure the mucous membrane. Steam and hot liquid have a similar effect;
  • Overcooling of the body can provoke pharyngitis, especially if there are problems with immunity;
  • The disease can accompany severe chronic diseases;
  • The quality of the air inhaled by a person has a direct impact on the state of the nasopharyngeal mucosa. The more irritating chemicals, smoke, dust in the environment, the higher the risk of developing inflammation;
  • Excessive intake of alcoholic beverages and tobacco smoking has a negative impact;
  • Pathologies of the gastrointestinal tract, such as gastroesophageal reflux and hernia of the esophagus, contribute to the ingestion of acidic gastric contents into the pharynx, which irritates the mucous membrane and can provoke pharyngitis;

  • The condition of the nasal cavity directly affects the condition of the pharyngeal mucosa. So, the cause of the development of pharyngitis can be chronic rhinitis or sinusitis. Not only constant breathing through the mouth affects, but also the effect of vasoconstrictor drops, which are used to treat the common cold. When instilled into the nasal cavities, they will certainly drain along the back of the pharynx, irritating it;
  • Sometimes carious teeth contribute to the maintenance of inflammation in the pharynx;
  • Separately, there is radiation pharyngitis, which is formed against the background of exposure to ionizing radiation. For example, this often happens when cancer patients are undergoing radiation therapy.

Pharyngitis symptoms

The symptoms of pharyngitis will largely depend on what form of the disease a person has. However, the patient always has pain, soreness and discomfort in the throat.

Symptoms of acute pharyngitis

The acute form of the disease proceeds diffusely and involves all parts of the pharynx in the process of inflammation: the nasopharynx, the oropharynx and the hypopharynx.

  • The disease rarely manifests as an isolated inflammation. Most often it begins against the background of other infectious diseases of the upper respiratory tract: ARVI, ARI, influenza, etc.
  • As an independent disease, pharyngitis develops against the background of exposure to the mucous membrane of the pharynx of cold air, hot liquids, tobacco smoke, etc.
  • The patient experiences pain when swallowing, complains of tickling and rawness in the throat. Most often, when swallowing food, there is no pronounced pain, but they are aggravated by the so-called "empty sip" (swallowing saliva).
  • The pain will radiate to the ears. This happens when tubopharyngeal ridges were involved in the inflammation process.
  • An increase in body temperature to subfebrile values is possible. Although often the general condition remains normal, or slightly disturbed.
  • During pharyngoscopy, swelling and redness of the mucous membrane lining the pharynx will be noticeable. The swelling extends to the uvula. It is possible to detect areas of the mucous membrane covered with a purulent bloom.
  • Sometimes the upper cervical lymph nodes are involved in the process of inflammation, becoming painful and swollen.
  • The feeling of a sore throat provokes a constant coughing.

Chronic pharyngitis symptoms

Chronic pharyngitis symptoms
Chronic pharyngitis symptoms

It has been established that chronic pharyngitis has a more distinct localization than acute pharyngitis. In this case, one of the sections of the pharynx is affected. Chronic pharyngitis can be atrophic, catarrhal, granulomatous and hypertrophic.

Often, the chronic form of the disease is not an independent pathology, but a consequence of existing health problems:

  • The patient experiences a scratching sensation and a dry throat;
  • The unpleasant sensations are accompanied by a dry cough;
  • On examination, the mucous membrane of the pharynx is pale, dry, thin, and may have a varnish sheen. In some areas, crusts and mucus are found;
  • For the catarrhal form of pharyngitis, mild pain is characteristic when swallowing food, the feeling of a foreign body in the pharynx. The cough becomes worse in the morning and may be interspersed with nausea and vomiting. A person coughs all the time to get rid of mucous phlegm, which constantly accumulates in the pharynx;
  • The hypertrophic form of the disease is characterized by pronounced changes in the mucous membrane. The proliferation of lymphoid tissue is possible in that part of the pharynx where inflammation is localized;
  • In the atrophic form of the disease, the mucous membrane is thinned, areas covered with a crust are found on it, zones with injected vessels are noticeable. Patients may have bad breath, and constant dryness in the throat forces a person to drink a lot of water. At the final stage of atrophic pharyngitis, the mucous membrane is very thin and painful;
  • For granular pharyngitis, a more pronounced manifestation of symptoms is characteristic than for catarrhal and hypertrophic inflammation. The granulomatous form of the disease develops against the background of frequent exacerbations of pharyngitis, as well as in the presence of chronic pathologies of the gastrointestinal tract. An accumulation of granules occurs on the back of the pharynx.

Pharyngomycosis symptoms

When the mucous membrane of the pharynx is affected by fungi, discomfort in the throat occurs in the form of perspiration, scratching, dryness and burning; negative feelings are very pronounced. In this case, the pain is moderate, increasing during meals, when saliva is swallowed. An exacerbation of fungal pharyngitis is accompanied by intoxication of the body.

The pharynx is covered with a white or yellowish coating. It covers the soft palate and palatine arches. If the plaque is removed, then bleeding areas can be visualized under it, which are often the entrance gate for secondary infection.

Complications and consequences of pharyngitis

Complications and consequences of pharyngitis can be quite serious, among them are:

  • The transition of an acute form of pharyngitis into a chronic pathology. Getting rid of a chronic disease is very problematic;
  • Peritonsillar abscess. This complication is characteristic of bacterial, mainly streptococcal pharyngitis. There is an increase in lymph nodes, sore throat increases, body temperature rises, an unpleasant odor emanates from the mouth. Against the background of an abscess, the risk of infection in the blood increases. Sepsis, in turn, is a condition that directly threatens the patient's life;
  • Retropharyngeal abscess. This condition is characterized by extensive purulent inflammation of the tissue of the pharyngeal space;
  • Formation of chronic bronchitis, accession of tracheitis and laryngitis;
  • The development of articular rheumatism. A complication occurs after bacteria invade the joints. At the same time, they swell, both local and general body temperature rises. The danger lies in the fact that not only the joints are affected, but also the heart muscle;
  • Inflammation of the auditory tube, otitis media;
  • Post-streptococcal glomerulonephritis. Those bacteria that provoked pharyngitis can enter the kidneys and start the process of inflammation there. However, the older the person, the lower the risk of developing this complication;
  • Cervical lymphadenitis. This complication is characterized by inflammation of the cervical lymph nodes;

  • Sialoadenitis. A rare complication of pharyngitis, which manifests itself in inflammation of the salivary glands. With a severe course of sialoadenitis, the help of a surgeon is required.

Pharyngitis diagnostics

The diagnosis of pharyngitis is in the competence of the otolaryngologist. During the examination of the throat, which is called pharyngoscopy, the doctor visualizes the signs characteristic of the disease: swelling of the arches and the back of the pharynx, its dryness, etc. In addition, the patient's complaints are taken into account when making a diagnosis.

To identify the causative agent of inflammation, it is necessary to conduct a bacteriological and virological study. For analysis, you will need to take a swab from the throat.

How is pharyngitis treated?

How to treat pharyngitis
How to treat pharyngitis

How to treat pharyngitis directly depends on the form of the disease. It is important to completely eliminate all factors that contribute to the maintenance of the inflammatory process in the throat mucosa. Therefore, an integrated approach to the treatment of pharyngitis is so important.

Treatment of acute pharyngitis

In case of acute pharyngitis, the following points should be considered:

  • Food should not irritate the mucous membrane of the inflamed pharynx. Therefore, all sour, pickled, salty foods and drinks are excluded;
  • Oral liquids should not be too cold or too hot;
  • It is important to stop drinking alcoholic beverages and smoking;
  • Gargle your throat after every meal;
  • It is useful to do foot baths;
  • If there are no allergic reactions, then before bedtime you can drink warm milk with the addition of honey and butter;
  • It is possible to carry out steam inhalations with herbal decoctions, or with pharmaceutical preparations;
  • Sprays Kameton, Ingalipt, Bicarminth have a disinfecting effect;
  • Also, as an antiseptic for the throat, you can use sucking lozenges - Faringosept, Strepsils, Ajisept, as well as Grammidin Neo.

Chronic pharyngitis treatment

Consider the following for chronic pharyngitis:

  • It is important to identify the cause that led to chronic inflammation in the pharynx. If this is another infection or disease in the body, then it is important to focus on its treatment;
  • Diet food means avoiding spicy, fried, salty and sweet foods. Bad habits should be excluded;
  • During treatment, agents with antibacterial activity should be used;
  • Antiseptic and anti-inflammatory agents can be used to gargle the throat. For example, a decoction of chamomile or sage;
  • Help to alleviate discomfort in the throat, relieve pain and relieve inflammation lozenges - Grammidin or Grammidin spray;
  • Sprays Kameton, Hexoral relieve inflammation;
  • It is recommended to perform inhalations with essential oils;
  • From physiotherapy, UHF helps well to fight chronic pharyngitis;
  • If indicated, you can take immunostimulating drugs and vitamins.

In the doctor's office, it is possible to carry out such a procedure as cauterizing the granules with trichloroacetic acid or silver nitrate in solution. If tissue hypertrophy is extensive, then cryotherapy, laser therapy, radio wave suppression of the posterior pharyngeal wall are used to remove it.

Treatment of purulent pharyngitis

Treatment of purulent pharyngitis
Treatment of purulent pharyngitis

Treatment for purulent pharyngitis includes:

  • In addition to adherence to dietary nutrition and an adequate drinking regime, it may be necessary to take antipyretic drugs, for example, Paracetamol or Nimesil;
  • The room in which the patient is located should be regularly ventilated;
  • It is important to give up any physical activity and stay in bed;
  • If phlegm is difficult to pass during coughing, then you can use drugs such as Ambrobene, Sinekod, Doctor Mom;
  • It is possible to use anti-inflammatory drugs, including Bronchomax;
  • Strepsils and Ajisept tablets help to get rid of sore throat;
  • You can gargle the sore throat with a solution of Furacilin, Miramistin, Chlorophyllipt;
  • Antiseptics based on oil and glycerin should be applied to the affected areas of the mucous membrane.

Treatment of fungal pharyngitis

Treatment for fungal pharyngitis includes the following points:

  • Antimycotics must be taken. These drugs include: Nystatin, Levorin, Diflucan, Fluconazole, Pimafucin;
  • If there are violations of the intestinal microflora, then the patient is prescribed drugs such as Linex, Baktisubtil, Acipol;
  • You should also not forget about local treatment, for which the throat is rinsed with antiseptic solutions, lubricated with Lugol's solution;
  • When it is not possible to gargle your throat, you can use sprays, for example, Hexoral and Rotokan;
  • Immunostimulants are prescribed for the treatment of fungal pharyngitis almost always, since the disease most often develops against the background of problems with immune defense.

General recommendations for the speedy recovery of patients with pharyngitis are as follows:

  • Minimize contact with people around you. If possible, you should spend several days at home. This will reduce the risk of infection with other pathogenic agents that will attack the weakened body;
  • You need to rest as much as possible. Daytime sleep is recommended;
  • Food should be light, rich in vitamins and minerals;
  • There should be no fried, spicy and fatty dishes on the menu;
  • A warm drink will help reduce sore throat;
  • During an exacerbation of the disease, you need to protect yourself as much as possible from tobacco smoke, completely abandon alcohol;
  • Dishes and hygiene products for the patient must be individual;
  • Regular wet cleaning of the room and its ventilation is necessary;
  • The throat should be gargled every hour. Ready-made antiseptic solutions can be purchased at the pharmacy;
  • Sprays Ingalipt, Teraflu, Cameton, as well as throat pills Faringosept, Strepsils, Lizobakt help to reduce pain and relieve inflammation;
  • If the cough is accompanied by difficult sputum, then expectorant syrups and tablets are used.
  • Inhalation with the use of a nebulizer allows you to moisturize the pharyngeal mucosa, dilute phlegm, contributing to its better discharge.

Treatment with a nebulizer deserves special attention. This is a special device that is used for inhalation. So, with a dry cough, it is recommended to use inhalations with mineral waters (Essentuki, Nabeglavi, Borjomi). To help the body get rid of the fungal flora and moisturize the pharyngeal mucosa, you can use a saline solution with a Furacilin solution in a 1: 1 ratio. Also used are drugs for inhalation such as Malavit, Rotokan, Acetylcysteine. It is important to remember that inhalations are prohibited against a background of increased body temperature.

As for antibiotic therapy, most often experts recommend taking drugs from the penicillin group, although the appointment of cephalosporins and macrolides is possible.

It is important to consider the following points:

  • To get rid of streptococcal flora and pneumococci, benzylpenicillin is indicated;
  • For otitis media, respiratory tract infections, E. coli, Ampicillin is prescribed;
  • To get rid of Pseudomonas aeruginosa, use Carbenicillin;
  • If the disease is provoked by staphylococci, then Dicloxacillin is indicated;
  • Oxacillin shows less activity in staphylococcal infection.
  • Ceftriaxone has a broad spectrum of action and is effective against most bacterial strains;
  • With pharyngitis of moderate severity, Erythromycin is prescribed.

So that the intestinal microflora does not suffer from taking antibiotics, it is necessary to take probiotic preparations in parallel.

Specific treatment for chronic pharyngitis in adults


Antibiotics for the treatment of chronic pharyngitis in adults are used only if the disease enters an exacerbation phase. In this case, the patient should have symptoms such as an increase in lymph nodes, an increase in body temperature. For an antibacterial agent to be effective, it is necessary to identify the sensitivity of the pathogenic flora to a specific drug. For this, a swab is taken from the throat.

The drugs of choice with a wide spectrum of action are:

  • Azitral 250 mg (taken for 3 days, 2 tablets per day);
  • Sumamed 250 mg (the duration of treatment is determined by the attending physician);
  • Amoxiclav 1000 mg (2 times a day for a week);
  • Tsiprolet 500 mg (2 times a day, course of treatment 5 days).

In addition, antihistamines should be taken in parallel, including:

  • Diazolin 150 mg - 2 times a day;
  • Suprastin 200 mg - once a day;
  • Pipolfen - 2 times a day, 1 tablet.

The course of treatment with antihistamines is a week.

If there is a need to suppress the cough reflex, which irritates the dry mucous membrane of the pharynx, then, on the recommendation of the doctor, antitussive drugs can be used. It can be Codelac, thermopsis herb, Codterpin, Libeksin.

A sore throat should be gargled with antiseptic solutions as often as possible, best done every half hour. Lugol's solution can act as an additional disinfectant. It is convenient to use in the form of a spray.

Local bacteriophages cope well with inflammation. These include tablets for resorption Lizobact. Also, local treatment can be supplemented with drugs such as Hexoral, Imudon, Strepsils, IRS-19.

A person must be at home during the treatment of an exacerbation of pharyngitis, for which a sick leave is opened for him for a period of 10 days to two weeks. In parallel, it is possible to undergo physiotherapeutic treatment: UFO, magnetotherapy, laser therapy.

Which doctor should I contact with pharyngitis?

To get rid of pharyngitis, you will need to visit the ENT doctor's office, who can give a referral to a physiotherapist. At the same time, one should get rid of carious cavities in the teeth, as foci of chronic infection. This requires a consultation with a dentist.

Answers to popular questions

  • Is pharyngitis contagious to others? Pharyngitis will be contagious to the people around it if it is infectious in nature. In this case, a person will not be the source of pharyngitis itself, but a distributor of bacteria or viruses that caused it.
  • Can pharyngitis be completely cured? Pharyngitis is most successfully treated in the initial stages of its development. Therefore, you should not delay contacting a specialist. It will be difficult to get rid of the chronic form of the disease, and no doctor can guarantee the complete absence of remission.
  • Is there a temperature with pharyngitis? The temperature with pharyngitis rises quite often, which is especially characteristic of the acute form of the disease.
  • Could there be a cough with pharyngitis? Cough with pharyngitis is one of the leading symptoms of the disease.

The author of the article: Lazarev Oleg Vladimirovich | ENT

Education: In 2009, he received a diploma in the specialty "General Medicine" at the Petrozavodsk State University. After completing an internship at the Murmansk Regional Clinical Hospital, he received a diploma in Otorhinolaryngology (2010)

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