What is Diphtheria?

A rare bacterial infectious disease characterized by an affliction of the upper respiratory tract mediated by the toxin of <i>Corynebacterium diphtheriae</i>. Symptoms include formation of an inflammatory pseudomembrane, fever, sore throat, headaches, coughing, dysphagia, dyspnea, and prominently swollen cervical lymph nodes. The disease may lead to respiratory failure and severe toxin-mediated damage of internal organs, including the heart and kidneys. A cutaneous form of diphtheria is more common in tropical climates and usually follows an indolent course.

Age of Onset

  • All ages
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