Rosalyn Carson-DeWitt, MD
Viral pharyngitis is a sore, inflamed throat.
Viral pharyngitis is may be caused by one of several viruses. It often occurs with other infections, such as a
Viral pharyngitis is more common in children and adolescents. Other factors that may increase your chance of getting viral pharyngitis include:
Viral pharyngitis may cause:
Your doctor will ask about your symptoms and medical history. A physical exam will be done. Most viral sore throats are diagnosed based on the symptoms and an examination of the throat. Sometimes, the throat will be swabbed to make sure that the sore throat isn't due to a bacterial strep infection.
There are no treatments to cure viral pharyngitis. Most cases of viral pharyngitis heal on their own within about one week.
Treatments to relieve symptoms include:
Sore throat pain can be treated with nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications (NSAIDs), such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen.
You can relieve symptoms by:
To help reduce your chance of getting viral pharyngitis, take these steps:
American Academy of Family Physicians
American Academy of Otolaryngology—Head and Neck Surgery
The College of Family Physicians of Canada
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Last reviewed September 2013 by
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