Strep Throat Diagnosis

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Strep Throat Diagnosis

Strep throat is an infection that tends to affect most people and is caused by the streptococcus pyogens bacteria. This infection may be confused with sore in nose and sore throat, however the symptoms associated with strep throat are quite different from those experienced in sore throat. Since it is a bacterial infection, it’s important to seek prompt treatment. Through proper strep throat diagnosis and treatment the duration of the infection as well as the severity of the symptoms tend to reduce.

Before starting treatment for strep throat it is important to get a definitive diagnosis. Such a diagnosis can be done based on physical examination of the patient and laboratory testing. The identification of certain symptoms associated with strep throat can help in making a diagnosis. These symptoms include extreme sore throat, fever of 101 degrees F or more, fatigue, headache, white patches on the throat and swelling in the lymph nodes. The other symptoms related with the infection may include a red rash, stomach ache and vomiting in rare cases.

The strep throat diagnosis is done through the physical examination of throat and chest and this is followed with a rapid strep test. In this test, a sterile swab is used to get a sample from the throat and this is checked for the pathogens. The results of this test can be obtained in as little as 20 minutes. However if this test is negative then the physician may demand a throat culture. In throat culture, a cotton swab is used to take sample from the throat. This is then mixed with a nutrient medium which allows the streptococcus bacteria to grow so that the bacteria can be effectively identified. The results of this test are available in 24 to 48 hours.

It is also possible to identify a streptococcus infection by measuring antibodies that may be produced in the body against bacteria. This test is known as anti-streotolysis O test or ASO titer. However this test is not considered to be completely accurate as the antibodies may not be detected for some weeks after an infection affects a person. In the newer tests used for strep throat diagnosis, DNA technology is used and this allows for rapid detection of the bacteria in a short period of time.

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