Dr. M.J. Bazos, Patient Handout
About Your Diagnosis
Pharyngitis is an inflammation of the throat that is most commonly caused by viral infections, but can also be caused by bacterial infections. The tonsils can also be involved. Diagnosis is usually done by obtaining a throat culture.

Living With Your Diagnosis
Signs and symptoms of the disease include fever, sore throat, difficulty swallowing, and general achiness.

Antibiotics may be prescribed. Nonaspirin medications can be taken for the fever and pain. Gargle with a warm salt water solution to relieve the sore throat. A cool-mist vaporizer may help relieve the dry, tight feeling in the throat.

The DOs
• Take antibiotics, if prescribed, until finished.
• Take Tylenol or Advil for pain and fever.
• Gargle with a warm salt water solution to relieve sore throat (use 1/2 teaspoon of salt in 1 cup of warm water).
• Use a vaporizer to relieve the dry, tight feeling in the throat. Clean the vaporizer and change the water daily.
• Replace your toothbrush after treatment is started to prevent reinfection.
• Limit your activities until symptoms subside.
• Increase your fluid intake.
• Follow a liquid diet if swallowing is difficult (soups, jello, ice cream, and juices).

The DON’Ts
• Don’t skip doses or stop antibiotics until finished.
• Don’t give aspirin to a child younger than 16 years with a viral illness because of the risk of Reye’s syndrome.
• Don’t share food or drinking glasses.

When to Call Your Doctor
• If fever continues after treatment is started.
• If there is increased difficulty in breathing or swallowing.
• If a severe headache occurs.
• If a rash develops.
• If a cough develops that produces thick, yellowgreen or bloody sputum.