Wednesday, 27 November 2013

Upper respiratory tract infection – The Symptoms

Upper respiratory tract infection
Upper respiratory tract infections are considered to be the infection of the airway above the glottis or vocal cords. This includes the nose, sinuses, pharynx, and larynx, including the infection of tonsillitis, pharyngitis, laryngitis, sinusitis, otitis media, etc,.
A. Symptoms
The symptoms of include nasal congestion, a runny nose, sneezing, pharyngitis/tonsillopharyngitis, headache, muscle aches (usually severe) sore throat, watery eyes, etc,. Influenza infections may result in different clinical presentations. In the study to determine the clinical differences between circulating influenza strains in a young healthy adult population in the tropics, found that there were no statistical differences between H3N2 and influenza B (p = 0.58). Those with nasal congestion, rash, eye symptoms, injected pharynx or fever were more likely to have H3N2; and those with sore throat, fever, injected pharynx or rhinorrhoea were more likely to have influenza B than H1N1-2009(1). Others in the study of the differing symptom patterns in early pandemic vs seasonal influenza infections, conducted by Department of Laboratory Medicine, National University Hospital, Singapore, found that from the week of June 16 to June 23, 2009, this pandemic influenza A(H1N1/2009) displaced and then replaced the seasonal influenzas (H3N2, H1N1, and B). Of 2683 samples tested during this 12-week surveillance period, 742 (27.6%) were positive for any influenza virus using this assay, with 547 cases of A(H1N1/2009) (20.4%), 167 cases of A(H3N2) (6.2%), 14 cases of A(H1N1) (0.5%), and 12 cases of influenza B (0.4%). Results of multivariate analysis showed that age (P < .001), fever (P < .001), cough (P < .001), sore throat (P = .002), rhinorrhea (P = .001), and dyspnea (P < .001) were significantly different among these groups.(2). According to the study of the symptoms of the common cold and influenza conducted by Cardiff School of Biosciences, Cardiff University, indicated that the effects of cytokines in human beings now helps to explain some of the symptoms of colds and flu that were previously in the realm of folklore rather than medicine-eg, fever, anorexia, malaise, chilliness, headache, and muscle aches and pains. The mechanisms of symptoms of sore throat, rhinorrhoea, sneezing, nasal congestion, cough, watery eyes, and sinus pain(3).
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