Family Medicine Physician & Sports Medicine located in Wilmington, NC
If you have a sore throat, headache, and fever, you could have strep throat. Dr. Richard Ferro offers urgent care services and on-site lab testing for conditions like strep throat at Carolina Care. You don’t have to wait for relief from your strep throat symptoms. Call Carolina Care in Wilmington, North Carolina or schedule an appointment online today.
Strep Throat Q & A
What is strep throat?
Strep throat is a bacterial infection that gives you a sore and scratchy throat.
The Streptococcus pyogenes bacteria causes this common and contagious infection. It spreads through the air, so you can be exposed in several ways, including:
- Being near someone infected who sneezes or coughs
- Sharing food or beverages with someone who has strep throat
- Touching your mouth, nose, or eyes after coming in contact with the bacteria
In most cases, strep throat isn’t dangerous. Without treatment, however, additional infections can develop.
What are the symptoms of strep throat?
The most common strep throat symptom is sudden throat pain. Additional symptoms often include:
- A headache
- Nausea or vomiting
- Pain when swallowing
- Red and swollen tonsils
- Fever, rash, or body aches
- Swollen lymph nodes in your neck
- Streaks of pus or white patches in your throat
If you've been exposed to strep throat, or if you’ve had strep throat symptoms for more than 48 hours, call Carolina Care and schedule an appointment.
Who is at risk of getting strep throat?
People of any age can develop strep throat, but it’s most common in children. Strep throat can also develop at any time of the year, but the majority of cases appear in the early spring and fall.
Strep throat thrives in areas where people are in close contact, like schools, because it’s so contagious. To reduce your risk of catching strep throat, it’s important to:
- Wash your hands regularly
- Don’t share drinking glasses or eating utensils
- Cover your mouth when coughing or sneezing
It’s also essential to teach children these behaviors to reduce the spread of strep throat.
How is strep throat diagnosed and treated?
During your appointment, Dr. Ferro performs a full physical examination and screens you for strep throat. This test involves swabbing your throat and running a rapid strep test or throat culture at Carolina Care’s on-site lab.
Rapid strep tests can detect the strep throat bacteria in minutes but sometimes yield false results, even if an infection is present. A throat culture test can take several days but provides a definitive diagnosis.
If strep throat is present, Dr. Ferro prescribes oral antibiotics. These reduce the severity of your symptoms and clear up your infection faster.
Call Carolina Care or schedule an appointment online today if you think you have strep throat.