Saturday, September 23, 2023

Can Strep Throat Turn Into Pneumonia

Complications Are Rare But Can Occur

Strep throat, pathology, symptoms, and management

Complications from scarlet fever are very rare but sometimes happen. They include:

  • Abscesses around the tonsils

Other, more serious complications are even rarer and can include include rheumatic fever, which causes inflammation, especially of the heart, blood vessels, and joints.

Some people confuse scarlet fever with rheumatic fever but they are totally different entities, Sabella says.

Scarlet fever may also lead to long-term problems with the kidneys, including kidney disease.

Still, the overwhelming majority of scarlet fever cases are fully treated and have no complications, Sabella says.

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How To Prevent Scarlet Fever

There is no vaccine for scarlet fever, but people can protect themselves by practicing good hygiene. This includes using a tissue to cover your mouth when sneezing or coughing, frequent hand washing, using alcohol-based hand sanitizer if soap and water are unavailable, and coughing or sneezing into your upper sleeve or elbow rather than your hands if a tissue isnt available.

Additionally, Sabella says that probably the best way to avoid scarlet fever is if you treat strep throat quickly and adequately. A lot of times you can prevent scarlet fever this way.

If your child develops any of the symptoms of scarlet fever especially if they have been around someone else who is sick get them to a pediatrician right away for treatment.

When The Confusion Occurs

As you can see, the symptoms of strep throat and bronchitis are fairly different. You dont typically cough with strep, and you dont usually have a sore throat with bronchitis. However, it can become confusing if your throat becomes so swollen with strep that you feel the need to cough, or you end up coughing so much with bronchitis that it leaves your throat raw and irritated. Overall, you should evaluate all of your symptoms and schedule an appointment with your doctor to receive the right diagnosis. This way, youll be able to take the right medication and follow a treatment plan that will address your illness and get you on the path to recovery.

Read Also: How Do I Know If I Have Pneumonia Or Bronchitis

How Are They Diagnosed

Most people with walking pneumonia dont go to the doctor because their symptoms are very mild. However, doctors use the same approach to diagnose both types of pneumonia.

To start, theyll likely listen to your lungs with a stethoscope to check for signs of a problem with your airways. They may also ask about your lifestyle, including the kind of environment you work in and whether you smoke.

In some cases, your doctor might use an X-ray look at your chest. This can help them differentiate between pneumonia and other conditions, such as bronchitis. Depending on your symptoms, they may also take a blood sample, swab your throat, or take a mucus culture to determine which type of bacteria is causing your symptoms.


The symptoms of walking pneumonia are often mild enough that people dont go to the doctor. If you do, however, your doctor will follow the same process for diagnosing either walking pneumonia or pneumonia.

Strep Throat Vs Bronchitis

Coughing? Don

Medically reviewed by Dr. Nick Rosen, MD on February 1st, 2021

Like most people, you can probably identify when you start getting sick. The question then becomes, What do I have? Some illnesses have overlapping symptoms, which can make it hard to know for sure what youve come down with, like bronchitis and strep throat. However, these conditions have enough differentiators that youor your doctorcan quickly rule one out.

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Pain And Fever Without A Cough Are Common Signs And Symptoms

In general, strep throat is a mild infection, but it can be very painful. The most common symptoms of strep throat include:

  • Sore throat that can start very quickly
  • Pain when swallowing
  • Fever
  • Red and swollen tonsils, sometimes with white patches or streaks of pus
  • Tiny, red spots on the roof of the mouth
  • Swollen lymph nodes in the front of the neck

Other symptoms may include a headache, stomach pain, nausea, or vomiting especially in children. Someone with strep throat may also have a rash known as scarlet fever .

The following symptoms suggest a virus is the cause of the illness instead of strep throat:

  • Cough
  • Conjunctivitis

It usually takes two to five days for someone exposed to group A strep to become ill.

A sore throat that starts quickly, pain with swallowing, and fever are some of the common signs and symptoms of strep throat.

How Long Do They Last

While walking pneumonia is usually milder than pneumonia, it involves a longer recovery period. It can take about six weeks to fully recover from walking pneumonia. However, most people recover from pneumonia in about a week. Bacterial pneumonia usually starts to improve shortly after starting antibiotics, while viral pneumonia usually starts to improve after about three days.

If you have a weakened immune system or a severe case of pneumonia, the recovery period might be longer.


While walking pneumonia is milder than pneumonia, it requires a longer recovery period. It can last for up to six weeks, while pneumonia symptoms usually start to improve within a couple of days.

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How Long Does It Last

It takes a certain amount of time to start to feel sick after getting exposed to a germ. This length of time is called the incubation period, and it depends on many things, especially which bug is causing the illness.

With influenza pneumonia, for example, someone may become sick as soon as 12 hours or as long as 3 days after exposure to the flu virus. But with walking pneumonia, a person may not feel it until 2 to 3 weeks after becoming infected.

Most types of pneumonia clear up within a week or two, although a cough can linger for several weeks more. In severe cases, it may take longer to completely recover.

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What Is Fungal Pneumonia

Streptococcus Pyogenes – Diseases and Their Management

Three types of fungi living in soil are known causes of pneumonia:

  • Coccidioides immitis and Coccidiodes posadasii are two related fungi common to the American Southwest. Both can cause coccidioidomycosis, also known as cocci or valley fever.
  • Histoplasma capsulatum is found in the central and eastern United States, especially areas around the Ohio and Mississippi River valleys, and causes a disease called histoplasmosis.
  • Cryptococcus is a fungi found in soil and bird droppings all across the country.

Most people who inhale these fungi don’t get sick, but if your immune system is weak, you may develop pneumonia.

Another fungus, Pneumocystis jirovecii, can generate an infection in premature, malnourished infants, and in people with a weakened immune system, such as those who have HIV or AIDS.

The symptoms of pneumonia that are caused by fungi are often similar to those of other forms of pneumonia, including a fever, dry cough, shortness of breath, and fatigue.

But because this type of pneumonia usually affects people with weakened immune systems, symptoms tend to develop faster, and people often experience a high fever.

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Can Bronchitis Turn Into Pneumonia

Bronchitis is a lung infection that causes irritation and swelling in the airways. These effects prompt the lungs to make more mucus than normal, triggering a cough as the body tries to get rid of excess mucus.

3 weeks , once the infection clears up.

A person with an underlying health condition may find it harder to get over bronchitis, which can put them at higher risk for pneumonia. It is important to treat bronchitis quickly to stop the infection from spreading deeper into the lungs.

Pneumonia causes symptoms similar to those of bronchitis, as well as:

  • fever
  • rapid heartbeat
  • loss of appetite

In some cases, rather than the infection spreading, a person will get a separate pneumonia infection alongside bronchitis.

Both infections have very similar symptoms, and this can make it difficult for doctors to provide an accurate diagnosis. A lung infection that they initially diagnosed as bronchitis may have been pneumonia from the start.

Dr Oz: Strep Throat & Antibiotics

Dr Oz did a show about Strep Throat caused by the Streptococcus bacteria. If you have ever had Strep Throat, you surely remember the unbearable pain every time you drink or swallow. A sore throat can be the sign of a cold, but it could also be the sign of Strep Throat which can be more dangerous than you think if it goes untreated. If you are wondering about the difference between a Sore Throat and a Strep Throat, then read this recap from another segment of Dr Oz: Sore Throat vs Strep Throat. Doctor Ozs Assistant-Of-The-Day was Joy from seat 28, and she said that just a couple of weeks ago she had a sore throat. Dr Oz is from Philadelphia originally, so he seemed particularly excited that Joy was from his hometown!

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How Is Walking Pneumonia Different From Regular Pneumonia

Walking pneumonia differs from typical pneumonia in several ways, including:

  • Walking pneumonia is a milder form of pneumonia.
  • Walking pneumonia usually does not require bed rest or hospitalization.
  • Walking pneumonia is usually caused by Mycoplasma pneumoniae. Typical pneumonia is most commonly caused by _Streptococcus _pneumonia or influenza virus or rhinovirus.

Children Most Often Affected

How to Treat Oral Thrush in Adults

Anyone can get PSGN after recovering from strep throat, scarlet fever, or impetigo. People at increased risk for those infections are also at increased risk for getting PSGN.

PSGN is more common in children than adults. Developing PSGN after strep throat or scarlet fever is most common in young, school-age children. Developing PSGN after impetigo is most common in preschool-age children.

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Dangers Of Having Strep Throat Left Untreated

Strep throat will not go away all by itself. If you leave it untreated, you might find yourself dealing with reoccurring strep throat for months on end.

The most common antibiotic for strep throat is amoxicillin. Antibiotics help to decrease how long youre infected, ease the symptoms, and also prevent the bacteria from spreading to others or worsening into something else.

If you fail to treat strep throat, you might end up suffering from:

Seek Medical Attention Always

Strep throat left untreated can result in life-threatening conditions. You should always seek out medical attention if you believe you have strep throat. A few days of taking antibiotics is far better than the alternative: suffering for weeks on end or your condition becoming life-threatening.

If you live in the Baton Rouge area of Louisiana, Coastal Urgent Care has a wide range of medical services to help you. Urgent Care is open seven days a week from 9 am to 8 pm.

Contact us today to make your appointment.

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Rsv Infection May Be Associated With Higher Risk For Bacterial Pneumonia

Two common and sometimes dangerous respiratory diseases, a viral one caused by respiratory syncytial virus , and a bacterial one caused by Streptococcus pneumoniae may be linked, suggests a new study. Scientists analyzed hospitalization data to investigate a possible association between RSV and pneumonia in young children, and found that infection with RSV may increase the risk of pneumonia.

Two common and sometimes dangerous respiratory diseases, a viral one caused by respiratory syncytial virus , and a bacterial one caused by Streptococcus pneumoniae may be linked, suggests a study published in this week’s PLOS Medicine. Daniel Weinberger, from Yale University School of Public Health, and colleagues, analyzed US hospitalization data to investigate a possible association between RSV activity and pneumonia in children under two, and found that infection with RSV may increase the risk of pneumonia caused by S. pneumoniae, especially in infants.

Associations cannot prove that one infection causes increased susceptibility to the other, and because the researches only had overall numbers for hospitalizations linked to either pathogen, they also could not check whether children had actually been infected with both RSV and S. pneumoniae. Nonetheless, the results point to possible interaction between the two diseases, and suggest that RSV infection may increase the risk for pneumococcal pneumonia, particularly in young infants.

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Could I Have A Sinus Infection And Strep Throat

The dangers of strep throat going undiagnosed and untreated

Did you know that It is possible to have a sinus infection and strep throat at the same time? When your bodys immune system is low, you are more susceptible to illnesses and have a harder time fighting them off. So, what starts as a mild cold can end up a severe sinus infection and strep throat.

A sinus infection occurs when your sinuses become swollen and inflamed. It is common to develop a sinus infection after a cold because a cold can cause sinuses to swell, preventing the discharge of mucus. According to WebMD, When the sinuses become blocked and filled with fluid, bacteria can grow there and cause infection. This infection is sinusitis.


  • Stomachache, fatigue, and vomiting


A physician can usually determine if you have strep throat in a matter of minutes with a rapid strep test. Once it is confirmed that you have strep throat, he or she will normally prescribe antibiotics. If you have a sinus infection and strep throat, the antibiotics that are prescribed for one illness will usually take care of the other illness as well.

Whether you have strep throat, a sinus infection, a cold, or the flu, FastMed Urgent Care is available to see you every day of the year. With locations throughout North Carolina and Arizona, finding the care you need is simple. Contact your local FastMed today.

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Active Infection Vs Carrier State

Not all S. pyogenes bacteria lead to an active infection. Some people live with the bacteria in their pharynx and nasal passages and don’t develop symptoms. These bacterial strains tend to be less virulent . These people are said to be colonized with the bacteria and are carriers of the disease. As many as 20% of school-aged children fall into this group.

Carriers are less likely to spread disease. It remains controversial whether they should be treated with antibiotics to eradicate the bacteria given the small chance that they could infect others. This may be a reasonable option if the carrier has frequent close contact with someone who has a weak immune system . It may also be a consideration if there are recurrent infections to other people within the same household.

Antibiotics Get You Well Fast

Doctors treat strep throat with antibiotics. Either penicillin or amoxicillin are recommended as a first choice for people who are not allergic to penicillin. Doctors can use other antibiotics to treat strep throat in people who are allergic to penicillin.

Benefits of antibiotics include:

  • Preventing the bacteria from spreading to others
  • Preventing serious complications like rheumatic fever

Someone who tests positive for strep throat but has no symptoms usually does not need antibiotics. They are less likely to spread the bacteria to others and very unlikely to get complications. If a carrier gets a sore throat illness caused by a virus, the rapid strep test can be positive. In these cases it can be hard to know what is causing the sore throat. If someone keeps getting a sore throat after taking the right antibiotics, they may be a strep carrier and have a viral throat infection. Talk to a doctor if you think you or your child may be a strep carrier.

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Try To Trace The Source

Another way to help determine whether youre suffering from strep throat or bronchitis is to think back if you were in contact with anyone that had either illness. Both strep throat and acute bronchitis are contagious, so itll be easier to figure out which one you have if you spent time with someone that had one or the other.

How Common Is Scarlet Fever In The United States

Acute Bronchitis Throat Lozenge

A study published November 2017 in the journal The Lancet Infectious Diseases found dramatic increases in scarlet fever in certain parts of the world. The research found that England in particular has seen a sharp rise in cases since 2014, with a 50-year high of 620 outbreaks totalling more than 19,000 cases in 2016.

Countries in East Asia, including China, Vietnam, and South Korea, have also reported recent surges.

In the United States, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention does not track the number of scarlet fever cases, so the exact number and whether cases are increasing or decreasing is not known. But Sabella says scarlet fever is more common than most people probably think.

Think of all the strep throat infections kids get each year. Pediatricians see lots of cases of scarlet fever, too, he says.

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Southern Cross Medical Library

The purpose of the Southern Cross Medical Library is to provide information of a general nature to help you better understand certain medical conditions. Always seek specific medical advice for treatment appropriate to you. This information is not intended to relate specifically to insurance or healthcare services provided by Southern Cross. For more articles go to the Medical Library index page.

Can I Prevent Pneumonia

The routine vaccinations that most people receive as kids help prevent certain types of pneumonia and other infections. If you have a chronic illness, such as sickle cell disease, you may have received extra vaccinations and disease-preventing antibiotics to help prevent pneumonia and other infections caused by bacteria.

People should get a pneumococcal vaccination if they have diseases that affect their immune system , are 65 years or older, or are in other high-risk groups. Depending on the bugs that are likely to affect them, these people also may get antibiotics to prevent pneumonia, as well as antiviral medicine to prevent or lessen the effects of viral pneumonia.

Doctors recommend that everyone 6 months and older get an annual flu shot. That’s because someone with the flu could then come down with pneumonia. Call your doctor’s office or check your local health department to see when these vaccines are available.

Because pneumonia is often caused by germs, a good way to prevent it is to keep your distance from anyone you know who has pneumonia or other respiratory infections. Use separate drinking glasses and eating utensils wash your hands often with warm, soapy water and avoid touching used tissues and paper towels.

You also can stay strong and help avoid some of the illnesses that might lead to pneumonia by eating as healthily as possible, getting a minimum of 8 to 10 hours of sleep a night, and not smoking.

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