By Dr Ananya Mandal, MD
Epiglottitis is the infection and inflammation of the epiglottis. Although initial symptoms are mild, the disease can worsen rapidly and if left untreated may be life-threatening.
Who is affected by the condition?
The condition is most common among children between aged 2 and 7. With advent of mass vaccination against Haemophilis influenza type b (that is the leading cause of the condition), the incidence has reduced to a great extent.
Symptoms of epiglottitis
Symptoms of epiglottitis include (1-6):
The four classic symptoms of epiglottitis
Thus, to summarize, classic four symptoms define the diagnosis of epiglottitis. These include the four D’s –
- Drooling of saliva due to inability and pain on swallowing
- Dyspnea – Shortness of breath or difficulty in breathing
- Dysphonia – Hoarseness of voice
- Dysphagia – Difficulty in swallowing
Edited by April Cashin-Garbutt, BA Hons (Cantab)
What is epiglottitis?