Health Zone: Poorly Treated Sore Throat May Damage Heart, Kidney, Experts Warn

Specialists in ear, nose and throat treatment have cautioned Nigerians against taking of sore throat for granted, noting that the health condition should be promptly and appropriately treated at all times.

They stressed that if untreated or poorly treated, sore throat can lead to the damage of organs of the body like the heart and kidneys in the long term.

According to the experts, Nigerians should also stop the use of lozenges for the treatment of sore throat, noting that it is often not the appropriate treatment option for it.

Lozenges, they said, are like sweets, adding that they can only provide temporary relief and do not help treat the organism that causes sore throat.

They explained that although sore throat can be a self-limiting viral infection sometimes, it can also be caused by a bacterium known as streptococcus which can be severe if untreated, adding that sore throat caused by the bacterium is known as strep.

Sore throat when untreated, the experts stressed can lead to an acute rheumatic fever that can develop into rheumatic heart disease, which could seriously damage heart valves.

Speaking with Punch HealthWise in separate interviews, the experts, consultant otorhinolaryngologists, Drs. Ethel Chime and Abdulrahman Afolabi also revealed that untreated and poorly treated sore throats caused by streptococcus can affect other organs of the body in the future, noting that the bacteria is connected with other organs of the body.

Chime, an Enugu-based ENT specialist, noted that there are several causes of sore throat, adding that it is a health condition that should be treated based on the cause.

She said, “It depends on what causes it. If it is due to an infectious process and it is not well treated, well, the assertion that it can affect other organs and parts of the body will hold.

“The reason is that there’s a particular organism that affects the throat causing sore throat, streptococcus, that same bacterium has a predilection for heart valves, it can also affect the kidney so because of that, it is good to treat sore throat properly.”

She also noted that cancerous growth can also cause a person to suffer a sore throat adding that “if such cancer is not treated early, it can spread to other parts of the body like the lungs, brain, and kidney and thus damage them.

On the treatment options for the health condition, she noted that if a sore throat is due to infectious causes like bacteria or fungi, appropriate antibiotics or antifungal treatment is often prescribed to treat it.

However, if it is due to cancer, she said the patient would have to be operated on so that the growth can be analysed for further treatment plans.

Also speaking with Punch HealthWise, Dr. Afolabi, explained that the organism that attacks the tonsils which causes sore throat can also attack the heart valves hence the need to ensure the health condition is promptly and properly treated.


About Delia Innoma

Delia Innoma is a prolific writer, promoter, artist manager with full professional proficiency in English, German and Igbo languages. She studied accounting and computer programming at the Institute of Management and Technology Enugu and Germany respectively. Delia is also a devoted mother of two and she founded the Diamond Celebrities Magazine. Her sense of responsibility and commitment to the Christian faith are essential forces driving her daily activities.

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