Strep throat is an infection of the throat region and tonsils characterized by itchiness and soreness. The name itself suggests that the causal pathogen is Streptococcus bacteria. There are several strains of Group A Streptococcus (GAS) bacteria, which are capable of causing this throat infection. In healthy people, they are present in the nasal passages and throat area without causing any infection. Under certain conditions, they multiply rapidly and result in strep throat symptoms. Some strains are more virulent than others and result in severe illnesses.
☛ A viral infection can also cause soreness of throat and a scratchy feeling. But, what differentiates a bacterial throat infection from a viral one is that the latter results in indicants, like runny nose, nasal congestion, and common cold like symptoms.
☛ In contrary to this, a person suffering from a bacterial infection experiences severe throat pain, which exacerbates within a short time. In case of strep throat or streptococcal pharyngitis, the person suffers from really high body temperature.
☛ Additionally, other symptoms of strep throat include inflamed throat, red patches or white coating in the throat region, swallowing difficulty, and swelling of lymph nodes. While strep throat is not a serious disease, mild to severe medical complications may occur in some patients.
After being diagnosed with this throat infection, the common concern amongst patients is that whether or not is this infection contagious. And, the answer is yes it is contagious.
☛ Strep bacteria are transmitted through direct contact with an infected person, sharing personal belongings of the patients, and through a patient's respiratory secretions. The infection usually aggravates on its own within 3 to 5 days after the symptoms appear.
☛ Treatment measures are opted to alleviate symptoms and shorten the disease duration. Since the causal organism is bacteria, intervention is carried out with the help of antibiotics (specific dosage).
Contagiousness of Strep Throat Post the Administration of Antibiotics
• Strep throat treatment with the help of antibacterial therapy is effectual in reducing the dangers of medical complications, especially in patients having a compromised immune system. There is no doubt in the intervention approach. But, the prime concern is that the bacteria are transmittable from an infected person to another even after starting the antibiotic treatment.
• According to health experts, strep bacteria are not transmittable for 24 hours (one whole day) after the first dose of antibiotics is taken. However, there are certain considerations for accepting this disease containment rule.
• The first is selecting the prescribed antibiotic, and second is taking the correct dosage as recommended by the doctor. Antibiotic dosage varies based on the age of the patient, medication type, patient's response to antibiotics, and other aspects.
• In case the two criteria are not fulfilled, there is a high chance of the bacteria spreading from an infected patient to the others.
Thus, to be on the safer side, a healthy individual should maintain a safe distance from the infected person, even if he/she has started an antibiotic course. Strep throat is contagious for 5 or as long as 10 days without antibiotic treatment. Precisely, antibacterial therapy is effectual in reducing the rate of transmission, shortening the length of the disease episode by about 16 hours, combating symptoms, and minimizing complications.
Disclaimer: This HealthHearty article is for informative purposes only and should not be used as a replacement for expert medical advice.