Benjamin Wedro, MD, FACEP, FAAEM
Dr. Ben Wedro practices emergency medicine at Gundersen Clinic, a regional trauma center in La Crosse, Wisconsin. His background includes undergraduate and medical studies at the University of Alberta, a Family Practice internship at Queen's University in Kingston, Ontario and residency training in Emergency Medicine at the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center.
Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD
Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD, is a U.S. board-certified Anatomic Pathologist with subspecialty training in the fields of Experimental and Molecular Pathology. Dr. Stöppler's educational background includes a BA with Highest Distinction from the University of Virginia and an MD from the University of North Carolina. She completed residency training in Anatomic Pathology at Georgetown University followed by subspecialty fellowship training in molecular diagnostics and experimental pathology.
In this Article
- Laryngitis facts
- What is laryngitis?
- What causes laryngitis?
- What are the symptoms of laryngitis?
- Symptoms of laryngitis in adults
- Symptoms of laryngitis in infants and children
- Is laryngitis contagious?
- How is laryngitis diagnosed?
- What is the treatment for laryngitis?
- Are there any home remedies for laryngitis?
- What are the complications of laryngitis?
- Find a local Ear, Nose, & Throat Doctor in your town
What are the symptoms of laryngitis?
Hoarseness, loss of voice, and throat pain are the primary symptoms of laryngitis.
Symptoms of laryngitis in adults
If the cause of laryngitis is infectious, affected individuals will have symptoms of a viral infection:
- Upper respiratory tract infection or cold
- Dry cough
- Sore throat
- Swollen lymph nodes (lymph glands) in the neck
- Pain with swallowing
- A feeling of fullness in the throat or neck
- Runny nose
- Loss of voice
Symptoms of laryngitis in infants and children
Air enters into our lungs like a bellows, the ribs swing out, and the diaphragm (the muscle that separates the chest from the abdomen) pushes down, sucking air through the mouth and nose, past the larynx and into the trachea and lungs. In children with croup, breathing becomes difficult. As the child tries to inhale through a swollen and narrow larynx, the cartilage may collapse, just like when attempting to breathe through a straw. As we age, the cartilage becomes stiffer and is able to withstand deeply indrawn breaths, but in children the cartilage is weaker and with each inspiration, the child may need to work hard to inhale The maturing of laryngeal cartilage and widening of airways usually occurs by age 6 or 7.
In infants and young children, the classic signs and symptoms of an inflamed larynx caused by infection include:
- a hoarse barky cough, and
Other symptoms of laryngitis
When the cause of laryngitis is not infectious, cough may be a significant symptom along with the hoarseness. There also can be a fullness felt in the throat. The patient also may complain of difficulty swallowing and have shortness of breath. Rarely, the patient can cough up blood-tinged saliva if the inflammation causes minor bleeding.
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