Upper respiratory tract infections
Infections in the nose, sinuses, pharynx or larynx (above level of vocal cords)
- laryngitis often referred to as a common cold, and their complications: sinusitis, ear infection and sometimes bronchitis.
- Symptoms of URI’s commonly include cough, sore throat, runny nose, nasal congestion, headache, low grade fever, facial pressure and sneezing.
- Onset of the symptoms usually begins 1-3 days after the exposure to a microbial pathogen. The illness usually lasts 7-10 days
- Group A beta hemolytic streptococcal pharyngitis/tonsillitis(strep throat):p/c: sudden onset of sore throat, pain with swallowing and fever.
- Otitis media: pain and pressure in middle ear.
- Over 200 different viruses have been isolated in patients with URIs. The most common virus is called the rhinovirus.
- Other viruses include the coronavirus, parainfluenza virus, adenovirus, enterovirus, and respiratory syncytial virus (RSV)
- Influenza is a more severe systemic illness which typically involves the upper respiratory tract
Infection in URT activates the hosts immune response
How does it spread?
- Respiratory droplets or by virus-contaminated hands.
- Upper respiratory tract (nose, throat, sinuses) mucosa inflammation causes increased secretions, rhinorrhea and results in sneezing, and coughing facilitating the spread.
Treatment and management (conservative/medical/surgical)
- Analgesia: paracetamol and ibuprofen
- Vitamin C??? – to shorten length of onfection by ~1d