Is the patient under 6 years old?
Have there been symptoms for more than 2 days without improvement?
Is there a persistent fever of over 102 degrees Fahrenheit?
Are there "pus pockets" on the tonsils?
Are there tender, enlarged lymph nodes ("glands") in the neck?
Are you coughing up stuff from your chest?

ACTIVITIES:  You may go to school or work if you don't have a fever. Decrease physical activities until feeling better. You do not have to stay in bed if you feel like being up. Get to bed earlier in the evening than normal.

MEDICATIONS:  Antibiotics are only helpful if you have a strep throat. It is impossible to make the diagnosis of strep throat without a lab test. Most sore throats are caused by viruses; the illness will just have to run its course. You may use over-the-counter medications, such as Tylenol, Chloroseptic spray, and sore throat lozenges.  Gargle with salt water occasionally.

DIET:  Drink plenty of water and juices.  Drinking hot beverages will help your throat to feel better.  You may eat anything you desire.


1. The temperature is over 103 degrees Fahrenheit.
2. You see no improvement by tomorrow.
3. You have trouble breathing.

If there is also COUGH, then see elsewhere.

If there is also FEVER, then see elsewhere.

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This page was last updated on 23 August 1999.