Rapid Strep Test
Type of test: In-House
Specimen: Throat swab/culture
Offered by: Family Naturopathic Clinic
It is a quick and accurate diagnostic tool used to determine whether or not strep bacteria are present in the patient’s throat.
The same test may be used to evaluate for the presence of Streptococci in other infected areas (for example, perianal infection in either gender, or vulvar infection in pre-pubertal girls).
Streptococcal throat infections facts:
- The incidence of sore throats (pharyngitis) varies with season, age of the patient, and geographic area.
- Sore throats can be caused by infection from either viruses or bacteria.
- Less than one-third of all sore throats is bacterial, the most common bacteria being Group A streptococcus (GAS).
- Children 5 years to 15 years of age are the most common age group infected by group A strep.
- Infection is most common during the winter/early spring season. This is likely due in part to the seasonal variation of strep bacteria concentration in the community as well as the higher likelihood of close proximity of individuals due to either weather conditions and/or school attendance during winter months.
The pediatric population may have different strep throat (GAS) symptoms:
- Infants (< 1 year of age) low grade fever (<38 C), thick purulent nasal discharge fussiness, decreased appetite, often following exposure to either daycare or older infected siblings
- Children (< 3 years of age) prolonged purulent nasal discharge, low grade fever, and enlarged and tender lymph nodes in the neck area
- Children (> 3 years of age) sudden onset sore throat, moderate fever (>38 C), headache, upset stomach, and enlarged and tender lymph nodes in the neck area. Other upper respiratory symptoms such as runny nose and cough are not usually associated with strep throat.
The majority of sore throats (70% to 85%) are caused by viruses.