Respiratory Diphtheria

Below you will find more information about Respiratory Diphtheria from Medigest. If you believe that you are suffering from any of the symptoms of Respiratory Diphtheria it is important that you obtain an accurate diagnosis from a medical professional to ensure that you obtain the correct medication or treatment for your condition. There are medical conditions that carry similar symptoms associated with Respiratory Diphtheria and therefore the information provided by Medigest is offered as a guideline only and should never be used in preference to seeking professional medical advice. The information relating to Respiratory Diphtheria comes from a third party source and Medigest will not be held liable for any inaccuracies relating to the information shown.


Respiratory Diphtheria is an acute, toxin-mediated disease caused by virus called Corynebacterium diphtheriae. There are 2 main forms: respiratory and cutaneous. This kind of condition lasts for several days.


Aside from the physical exam, doctors may require a sample taken from the patient to grow a nose and throat cultures to check for the virus.


Treatment of this disease depends on the outcome of a culture from the patient. The following may be given to the patient as treatment: antibiotics, antitoxins, certain kinds of erythromycin, and penicillin. It is also advised, especially for the children, to get vaccinated for this disease.

Symptoms and Signs

The symptoms vary depending on the stage of incubation of the virus. In the onset, patients may have sore throat and low-grade fever. In severe cases, a person may suffer from asphyxiation (obstructed breathing by the membrane), which may lead to death. A bull neck (swelling of the neck) is another serious sign of the sickness. Rare effects of this toxin include complications like myocarditis (swelling of the heart), and nerve paralysis.


As mentioned, this condition is a viral infection by nature. Diphtheria is contagious and is transmitted from one person to another by droplet or direct contact with the nasopharyngeal secretions of an infected person. Raw milk is also seen to serve as a medium for transmission.

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