How to tell between viral and bacterial throat inflammation?

In the majority of cases sore throat is caused by viruses, the disease is self-limiting and has a favorable outcome. In most of the cases clinical presentation of viral pharyngitis is milder than the bacterial one. It can be part of a general inflammation of the respiratory organs or restricted to larynx only.

The leading symptom is a sore throat, spontaneous or at swallowing, and it can be accompanied by reflex pain toward the ear. Along with the pain, burning and scratching in the throat, exhaustion and increased temperature also occur. More severe cases are accompanied with very high temperature, toxemia, and general weakness.

The examination shows redness and swelling of the mucosa and lymphatic tissue with whitish deposits on the mucosa, which are significantly lesser than in the case of a bacterial cause. Sometimes additional symptoms characteristic of some viruses are also there, however very often they are not useful for differentiating between the causes of the disease.

Viral throat inflammations are symptomatically treated. Antibiotics do not act on viruses; therefore, they should not be prescribed in case of viral inflammation!  Resting in a room with constant and moderate temperature along with regular airing and air wetting is recommended. One should drink enough warm and not hot liquid (tea), eat warm soups, and rinse the throat. Before the throat used to be rinsed with tea, for instance a sage tea, and nowadays tea has been replaced by oral antiseptics in the form of sprays, liquids, and lozenges/pastilles/tablets.

Use Lysobact® products (Lysobact® compressed lozenges, Lysobact Spray® or Lysobact Complete Spray®).  Active components of Lysobact® act against inflammation agents (bacteria, viruses, and fungi), alleviate the symptoms and the inflammatory process and help the oral and throat mucosa lesions heal. Lysobact® protects the oral and throat mucosa and strengthens the local immune response.


Symptoms Viral inflammation Bacterial inflammation
Illness onset slow sudden
Temperature up to 38°C above 39°C
Throat pain moderate pain strong pain
General symptoms less pronounced very pronounced
Respiratory symptoms sneezing, hoarseness, cough mostly non-existent
Larynx red with or without serous exudate extremely red with purulent deposits
Lymph nodes can be increased, but are mostly not painful swollen and painful
Treatment symptomatic antibiotic (doctor prescribed)
Indication for Lysobact® use YES YES


Spreading of the inflammation onto the pharynx and swelling of the pharynx mucosa can cause hoarse throat and difficult breathing, due to consequential impassability and airway function disruption.If throat inflammations are bacteria caused, the disease usually occurs suddenly, with tremor and fever, general weakness, headache, and exhaustion. The most common cause of bacterial pharyngitis is the streptococcus bacterium, therefore this type of pharyngitis is most often associated with the name „streptococcal angina“. Streptococcal angina starts very suddenly, with increased temperature, headache, and fatigue. At the beginning of the disease vomiting also occurs sometimes, especially in small children. These general symptoms typically precede local symptoms, among which a sore throat with difficult swallowing is the most important, and upon throat examination redness of the pharynx with increased and eroded tonsils with visible pus deposits are especially brought to the forefront. Streptococcal angina is characterized by an increase in lymph nodes on the neck, below the lower jaw, that are tender. Patients with streptococcal angina, apart from sore throat, do not exhibit other signs of a cold. Numerous complications are associated with streptococcal angina. They used to be much more frequent before, and nowadays with an appropriate antibiotic treatment they occur extremely rarely.

Bacterial throat inflammations are treated by antibiotics prescribed by a doctor. We must not take antibiotics on our own! When taking antibiotics, it is very important to strictly adhere to the doctor’s or pharmacist’s instruction – take the drug at a precisely defined time, at the set dose and for as long as it is prescribed.

Lysobact® products (Lysobact® compressed lozenges, Lysobact Spray® or Lysobact Complete Spray®) can be used as an adjuvant local therapy. Unlike other products for symptomatic therapy, Lysobact® can be used in combination with antibiotics as it improves their antibacterial effect.

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