Acute laryngotracheitis

Acute laryngotracheitis. Symptoms and causes

Laryngotracheitis is an infectious and contagious disease that must be treated immediately in order to alleviate its symptoms and prevent its development.

What is?

It is an inflammation of the larynx and trachea, also called croup . It is a common infectious disease, usually mild.


Acute laryngotracheitis is caused by viruses, it is very common in children between 6 months and 3 years of age and is spread through respiratory secretions from the cough or sneeze of infected people.

Laryngitis is very contagious during the first few days.


Usually the process begins with a cold with cough, fever and runny nose. Gradually, and typically at night, the cough changes and becomes more dry and metallic (like a dog’s bark). The child is hoarse (the vocal cords are in the larynx ) and may have difficulty breathing and make a whistling sound when breathing (stridor) every time they take a breath.

In many cases, laryngitis lasts from one to three days , with children being worse at night. A dry cough can take up to two weeks to go away completely.


When there is a suspicion that a child may have laryngitis , it is necessary to go to the pediatrician to assess the severity of the disease.

It is a disease that can be very frightening for parents and children. The best initial treatment is to calm the child by holding him in your arms. Many children get better breathing the cool night air or the steam that rises from the hot water tap in the bathroom.

If respiratory distress and stridor are very striking, you should go to an emergency center. It will be treated with anti- inflammatories (corticosteroids) and a copious intake of fluids.

It is important to remember that antibiotics are of no use in laryngitis .

Children can return to school when their fever is gone.

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