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EPIGLOTTITIS

EPIGLOTTITIS SYMPTOMS DIAGNOSIS TREATMENT

Epiglottitis is a life threatening condition affecting children of ages 3-8. It is caused by a bacterium, H. influenza type B. The outcome may be perilous if immediate medical attention is not available.


Symptoms

The onset is abrupt and the child may have had a respiratory illness previously, lasting approximately 2-3 days. The respiratory difficulty usually appears in the middle of the night. High fevers may also be present. The child may appear to be sitting up, leaning forward, and gasping for breathe. Drooling, loss of voice and inspiratory stridor (noisy inhalation) may also be seen. The condition can rapidly progress to respiratory arrest and death.


Diagnosis

History and physical examination by a physician is required. Examination of the throat with a tongue should only be done in a controlled setting where if respiratory arrest occurs, intubation is possible. Additional tests include lateral neck x-ray. Laryngoscopy is used for definitive diagnosis which shows inflammation of the epiglottis and surrounding areas.

Treatment

If epiglottitis is suspected, immediate hospitalization is required. Intravenous antibiotics are given and oxygen or intubation may be needed to keep the airway patent.

Posted By :Dr. Sunitha, NJ, USA   Contact Now





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