Strep throat is an infection in the throat, making a person experiences a sore throat. To determine if a person has a strep throat, what usually done is taking a rapid strep test. There are several types of strep, but the Group A strain is usually the cause of serious throat infections. It is necessary to take a strep A test as soon as one develops symptoms of throat infection to determine if there is a presence of the Group A strep.
Usually, doctors recommend taking a Strep A test if a person is experiencing signs of sore throat such as sore throat, dizziness, weakness, headache or fever. You can perform at Home Strep test with a family member to assist you. You should also check out if the throat is inflamed and has whitish or yellowish spots as well as if your neck has gotten swollen. Anybody who got close to a person with a strep throat could be contaminated and needs to take a rapid strep test as well.
Normally, it takes two to three days to conduct a strep throat test. It is done by getting a throat swab and putting in a special cup or culture and allows the infection to grow in it. If it grows, then there is an infection in your throat. With a rapid strep test, the process can generate results in just a few minutes. What the test does is determine if there is a presence of the Group A strep in your throat.
You can take a strep A test without needing to prepare anything prior the test. What is done is taking a sample of the mucus in your throat with a cotton swab and let it undergo testing for the presence of the bacteria from the Group A strep. While collecting the mucus, some people could feel like choking.
A rapid strep test may be considered excellent for at home use but it may need to be repeated when the test was conducted while there was not yet sufficient presence of bacteria or the sore throat has been experienced for a long period already or when you are already taking some medications for the sore throat.
When the result came out positive for the presence of the bacteria from the Group A strep, there is no more need for further tests. The doctor will prescribe appropriate antibiotics for the infection. Sometimes, it is also possible to have a sore throat even if there is no presence of the bacteria from the Group A strep. It is the milder sore throat and just caused by a viral infection.
United States has a high incidence of strep throat cases reaching about 10 million cases every year. If the symptoms are left untreated, the infection could last for almost two weeks. Young kids under two years old are rarely affected by this condition. However, children who are commonly affected by the strep throat are those aging 5 to 10 years old. Though there are about 20% of the children who could possibly be carriers of the bacteria, it is possible that they do not manifest any symptoms of strep throat.
The importance of identifying streptococcal infection
Those people who experience the symptoms of streptococcal infection and immediately consulted the doctor for proper treatment will recover from the condition more quickly. The antibiotic treatment will provide immediate relief of the symptoms; it will shorten the duration of the illness as well as to prevent the bacteria to be spread to other people.
Those who were diagnosed to have the streptococcal infections are possible for developing rheumatic fever. However, this happens rarely. Why rheumatic fever could be serious is because it is associated with one’s heart, joints and could also damage the person’s nervous system. This could be prevented if you will undergo a Strep A test immediately once you experience the symptoms of strep throat and if found positive, have proper treatment for it.
Kidney problem could also arise due to this streptococcal infection. And so, when you experience symptoms of a strep throat, it is best that you take at home strep test right away or consult a doctor immediately. Taking a rapid strep test will make a difference as it provides instant results.