November 25, 2015

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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:

  • croup,
  • a hoarse barky cough, and
  • fever.

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. Continue Reading

Reviewed on 5/1/2015