Signs of diphtheria are easy to recognize?

The article is professionally consulted by Master, Doctor Doan Ngoc Quynh - Pediatrician - Pediatric Center - Vinmec Times City International Hospital.

Diphtheria is an infectious and toxic disease caused by the bacteria diphtheria. The disease is very easily spread from an infected person to a healthy person through the respiratory tract. The symptoms of the disease are easily confused with the common cold.

1. What is diphtheria?

Diphtheria is a dangerous infection caused by the bacterium Corynebacterium diphtheriae, which is highly contagious and rapidly causes epidemics. This is an acute bacterial infection with pseudomembranous glands in the amygdala, pharynx, larynx, and nose. The disease can appear on the skin, other mucous membranes such as the conjunctiva of the eyes or the genitals.

2. What causes diphtheria?

Corynebacterium diphtheriae is the cause of diphtheria. The disease is very easily spread from an infected person to a healthy person through the respiratory tract. Or indirectly transmitted by contact with toys and objects contaminated with secretions of people infected with diphtheria bacteria. Even if an infected person has no symptoms, they can still pass the bacteria on to others about 6 weeks after the infection begins.
Diphtheria bacteria most commonly affect the nose and throat. Once you have an infection, the bacteria release a toxin that enters the bloodstream, causing thick, gray membranes in:
● Nose
● Throat
● Tongue
● Sugar breathing (trachea)
In some cases, the toxins released by the bacteria can damage other organs in the body, including the heart, brain, and kidneys. As a result, the disease can lead to life-threatening complications, such as myocarditis, paralysis, or kidney failure.
Children are often vaccinated against diphtheria from birth, so the disease is very rare. However, in areas with low rates of vaccination against diphtheria, the disease can still spread. In these localities, children under 5 years old and elderly people over 60 years old are at high risk of contracting diphtheria.
The following people will also be at higher risk for diphtheria if:
Not fully vaccinated, on schedule
● Travel to a country where diphtheria vaccine is not available
● Get sick immune disorders, such as AIDS
● Living in unsanitary or overcrowded or cramped environments.

3. Signs to recognize diphtheria

Symptoms of diphtheria will usually appear within 2-5 days of being infected with the bacteria. Some people will not show any symptoms while others will develop mild symptoms that are often mistaken for a common cold.
The most noticeable and common symptom of diphtheria is a thick, gray plaque formation in the throat and tonsils. Other common symptoms include:
● Fever
● Chills
Swollen glands in neck
Big cough
Sore throat, swollen throat
Pale skin
● Feeling worry, fear.
dấu hiệu bệnh bạch hầu
Triệu chứng dễ nhận thấy nhất của bệnh bạch hầu là hình thành mảng màu xám, dày ở họng và amidan

In addition, a number of other symptoms may develop as the disease progresses, including:
Difficulty breathing or swallowing
● Vision changes
● Stuttering
● Signs of shock, for example such as pale and cold skin, sweating and heart palpitations

4. Diphtheria treatment

People with diphtheria will be injected with a specific antitoxin to fight the bacteria's toxins, combined with antibiotics to kill the diphtheria bacteria. Severe cases need to open the airway, provide respiratory support, put a pacemaker for the heart...

5. How to prevent diphtheria?

Diphtheria occurs in all parts of the world and has caused serious outbreaks, especially in children, in an era when there was no preventive vaccine. In 1923, the diphtheria toxoid vaccine was introduced and since then the severity of the disease has changed worldwide.

The most effective way to prevent diphtheria is to get vaccinated fully and on time. Currently, Vinmec is providing a variety of diphtheria vaccination services for children and adults with 5 combinations, including:
● 6-in-1 vaccine Infanrix Hexa of GSK (Belgium)
● Vaccine- Apply for 6 in 1 Hexaxim of Sanofi (France)
Pentaxim 5 in 1 vaccine of Sanofi (France)
● Adacel 0.5 ml of Sanofi - France
● Tetraxim 0.5 ml of Sanofi - France
To ensure Immunization effectiveness and safety, before injection, customers will be examined by specialists, fully screened for physical and health problems, and advised on preventive vaccines and injection regimens. , monitoring and post-vaccination care before the appointment of vaccination according to the latest recommendations of the Ministry of Health & World Health Organization.
To register for examination and vaccination against diphtheria, you can contact the nationwide Vinmec Health System Hotline, or register online HERE.

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