Streptococcal infections are quite common among children and adolescents. Among adults the strep throat infections may not always be accompanied with symptoms. Often these infections are caused by group A streptococcus bacteria or streptococcus pyogenes. However now group c strep throat infections are also being observed. This infection is caused by group C bacteria or streptococcus equisimilis bacteria.
A large number of group c strep throat cases have been observed in recent times, particularly among college going individuals. This bacteria have resulted in development of streptococcal tonsillitis among college going individuals. The group C streptococci bacteria are related to the group A bacteria. When observed under the microscope, these appear to be small and have a bead like shape. These bacteria produce toxins as well as surface proteins that act against the immune system and cause strep throat.
The group C strep throat bacteria tend to live on animals like cattle or horses. In the past, these bacteria could spread to human beings through contact with the animals or through raw milk. However, now with pasteurization of milk such spreading is quite uncommon. Like group A bacteria, these group C bacteria can live in throats of people and they are contagious like group A bacteria. So close contact with infected person can result in spreading of the group C bacteria.
The symptoms associated with group C strep throat infection may include high fever, swelling in the neck region, particularly in lymph nodes and sore throat. Tonsillar enlargement may also be observed. A rapid strep test performed on individuals, suffering from group C strep throat infection may prove to be negative. Other symptoms that may be experienced include several throat pain, cervical adenopathy and hoarseness . The fever may be more than 100.4 degrees F.
Patients suffering from group C strep throat infection may not experience symptoms like problems in breathing or coughing. The treatment for the condition includes prescribing antibiotics like penicillin, clindamycin as well as macrolides. These medicines may be prescribed for a period of 10 days.