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Q. Why do I get throat pain with swollen lymph nodes and swallowing difficulty after flu?

Answered by
Dr. Jagdish Chaturvedi
and medically reviewed by Dr. Vinodhini. J
This is a premium question & answer published on Jan 22, 2020

Hello doctor,

I have a very sore throat, and can barely talk or swallow. It is very red and swollen with red streaks and blisters. It hurts mostly on the left side, and my left ear hurts as well. My glands are very swollen to a point of protruding from my neck and are tender to touch. I have a low fever going between 99 and 100. My stomach is slightly upset as well. I am 16 and weigh about 174 lbs. I have been exposed to streptococcal infection but have not had it since I was 7 years old. I have a doctor's appointment next week so I am holding off going. I did have a flu last week but was feeling better until I got this sore throat. I am not sure if this is still from the flu or something else. The first file is a picture from when the sore throat started two days ago and the second was from today.

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Hi,

Welcome to icliniq.com.

I have seen the pictures. (attachment removed to protect patient identity).

Your description and the images point to acute granular tonsillopharyngitis, a bacterial throat infection, probably due to streptococcus. With low grade fever, throat pain, difficulty in speaking, swallowing and enlarged tender lymph nodes, you certainly need a course of antibiotics. I personally do not think that you should wait for a week to start any medications. For an antibiotic, you will need a prescription from a doctor who examines you in person. In case, if you must wait then you can try the following conservative management.

In the meanwhile, I can advise you to take an anti-inflammatory medication like oral Paracetamol 500 mg twice daily after meals for five days along with antiseptic mouthwashes or gargles with Chlorhexidine or Betadine (dilution of 5 ml in 50 ml water and should not be swallowed) three times a day before and after meals with voice rest and adequate hydration with fluids (drink approximately two liters of water per day). Most throat infections would subside on their own without medications in eight to ten days. You can expect a recovery in two to three days if you take an antibiotic along with the supportive medications that I have recommended to you.

I hope this helps.


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