Tag Archives: anaphylaxsis

Non-Contagious Causes of a Sore Throat (Part 2)

We’ve all had a sore throat at some point in time and wondered if we should visit a doctor or if it will go away on its own. Sometimes a sore throat is a result of a passing cold, but other times it may be a sign or side effect of an underlying health condition and treatment may necessary to help it pass. We checked out the bacterial and viral causes of sore throats in our last post, so now here are some other types of sore throat causes:

  1. Allergies can cause the mucus membrane to swell, leading to irritation and soreness or itching of the throat. A more serious allergy-related cause of an uncomfortable throat would be an anaphylactic (life-threatening) allergy response which can cause a swollen, painful throat, hives, swelling and difficulty swallowing or breathing. This condition is life threatening, so if someone is experiencing these symptoms seek emergency medical treatment for them as soon as possible.
  2. Idiopathic or hereditary angioedema (swelling of the lower layers of the skin) can cause swelling in all parts of the body, including the throat. Those with angioedema may have some trouble swallowing on one side of the throat but otherwise may feel okay. However, as with anaphylaxis, symptoms can quickly turn dangerous. If you experience extreme throat tightening, difficulty swallowing or breathing, it is important to seek emergency care as you may need to be given corticosteroid injections or IVs to alleviate the throat swelling.

  3. Sinusitis, rhinitis, and asthma are often affiliated with a related condition called post nasal drip (PND) where excess mucus slides down the back of the throat and gets stuck, causing frequent coughing, tickling and soreness of the throat. If you suffer from sinus issues or asthma and think you may have PND, talk to your doctor (or one of ours) about treatment options today.
  4. Injured muscles – Sometimes if someone has yelled too much or too loudly, or has injured their throat in some way, for example by swallowing a jagged piece of chip, it can be tender and painful for days afterward.

  5. GERD – Those who have gastroesophageal reflux disorder may experience the occasional sore throat due to the bilious acid that repeats back up the esophagus and sometimes into the mouth. This acid can mildly burn or irritate the throat if it happens frequently. Speak to your doctor today if you experience heartburn symptoms along with an intermittent sore throat, or if you know you have GERD but need treatment for your throat as well.
  6. Smoking and other irritants – smoking exposes your throat to thousands of chemicals and irritants, many of which are carcinogenic. It is common for smokers to experience a longstanding sore throat due to this constant exposure. Those who work in jobs involving pollutants and chemicals may experience similar throat issues.
  7. Rare causes – Rarely, a sore throat can be a sign of HIV or a malignant throat mass. If you sore throat doesn’t respond to antibiotics or other treatment and persists for weeks or months, be sure to see your doctor to rule out more serious issues.

There you have the common non-contagious sore throat causes. If you have any questions about the conditions listed in this post, feel free to sign up to DocChat today to speak to one of our experienced, board certified doctors!





Strange But True Allergies

  1. Exercise Induced Anaphylaxis

Cholinergic urticaria is a reaction to exertion which induces hives, and is sometimes accompanied by acute hypotension which mimics anaphylactic shock. Very rarely, people experience true anaphylactic shock from physical activity, but the exact science seems to be cloudy and usually there are other contributing factors. Doctors believe that what the person has eaten and medications they’ve taken such as NSAIDS before exercising, combined with the temperature and weather all play a role in episodes of exercise induced anaphylaxis. There could also be an element of temperature sensitivity involved as well.

  1. Allergic Response To The Cold

A few unlucky people have an allergy to cold temperatures. If their body temperature drops too low or if they come in contact with a cold substance they can break out into hives or a rash or develop swelling in the area. Often the person’s reaction will worsen when the body starts to warm up. In more extreme cases the person can go into a potentially fatal whole-body reaction (anaphylaxis) requiring an Epipen and emergency care. This type of systemic reaction is typically seen in cold-allergic patients who were immersed in cold water of less than 39’F.

  1. Allergy To Water

Aquagenic urticaria is a rare sensitivity (to water) that is largely cutaneous. Symptoms include hives, a rash, itching or pain upon contact with any kind of water. More women than men are afflicted by aquagenic urticaria and most often the condition develops around the time of puberty. Unfortunately, there is no cure for this condition, and no treatment will eliminate symptoms, only lessen them. Treatments include antihistimines, topical corticosteroids, emulsion creams, ultraviolent therapy or in extreme cases AIDS medications have helped patients.

  1. Allergy To The Sun (Photosensitivity)

Like the others on this list, a sun allergy, also known as photosensitivity or solar urticaria is quite rare. People who have this affliction suffer a reaction to the ultraviolet light of the sun. The reaction mostly effects the skin, causing hives, redness, pain, or scaling; sometimes the blistering can be quite severe and debilitating. There are different types of sun allergies, the most common being polymorphic light eruption. Most people with sun sensitivity have to take great lengths in the summertime, use much stronger sun block (sometimes prescription), use corticosteroid creams or take medications.

  1. Semen Allergy

Also known as Seminal Plasma Hypersensitivity, a hypersensitivity to semen can lead to itching, skin irritation, swelling and burning minutes after the encounter. Immunization shots can help people with this extremely rare condition. There have been less than 100 documented cases, but there may be more people out there with the issue on a smaller scale.

There you have it, a few of the strangest allergies out there! If you have any questions or concerns about allergies, sign up to DocChat today for a video consultation with one of our excellent DocChat physicians! Thanks for visiting, hope to see you soon!