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Symptom Checker

Step 4: Read and complete the decision guide to learn more about your symptoms.

Sore Throat

You may have an infection. The symptoms of a bacterial infection, such as strep throat, usually start abruptly and quickly get worse over a day or two. Mononucleosis tends to come on more gradually over several days to a week.

Strep throat and mono almost always have additional symptoms, not just a sore throat.

Do you have one or more of the following symptoms with your sore throat

  • fever over 101F

  • painful or enlarged lymph nodes in the neck

  • white or light yellow spots on your tonsils

  • extremefatigue

  • significant headache?

Most likely, you have a mild viral infection or allergies. In the next few days, you may develop new symptoms that help make a diagnosis. In that case, you should try going through this tool again from the start. If you do not feel better by the end of two weeks, make an appointment to see your health care provider. While you may just have a viral infection or a mild case of allergies, you want to make sure you don't miss other more serious causes of a sore throat. Especially, if you are a smoker or have ever been a smoker, you want to make sure you do not have a tumor or throat cancer.

Yes, I have some of these symptoms.

No, I do not have these symptoms.

Disclaimer: This content should not be considered complete and should not be used in place of a call or visit to a health professional. Use of this content is subject to specific Terms of Use & Medical Disclaimers.

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