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The patient has a sore throat. What is the etiology of the symptoms?

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A sore throat, also known as pharyngitis, can have various etiologies. The most common cause of sore throat is a viral infection, such as the common cold, flu, or mononucleosis. In these cases, the sore throat is usually accompanied by other symptoms, such as cough, runny nose, fever, and body aches.

Another common cause of sore throat is a bacterial infection, most notably strep throat, which is caused by the bacterium Streptococcus pyogenes. Strep throat is characterized by a sudden onset of sore throat, difficulty swallowing, fever, and swollen lymph nodes in the neck. Unlike viral sore throat, strep throat does not usually cause cough or runny nose.

Other less common causes of sore throat include allergies, acid reflux, and environmental irritants such as smoke or pollution. In some cases, the cause of sore throat may be unknown or due to a non-infectious cause, such as muscle strain or trauma to the throat.
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