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June 1982

Acute Epiglottitis Caused by β-Hemolytic Group C Streptococci

Author Affiliations

Fairfax Hospital Falls Church, Va; Georgetown University Medical Center Washington, DC

Am J Dis Child. 1982;136(6):558-559. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1982.03970420082024

Haemophilus influenzae type b is the most common cause of acute epiglottitis. We recently cared for a 9-year-old girl with chickenpox in whom fulminant acute epiglottitis developed on the fifth day of the exanthem. To our knowledge this is the only reported case of acute epiglottitis in which β-hemolytic streptococci have been recovered from blood and epiglottis cultures taken simultaneously.

Report of a Case.—A 9-year-old girl was admitted to the hospital with progressive, severe upper-airway obstruction. Nineteen days earlier, a sibling had become ill with varicella and five days earlier typical chickenpox lesions had erupted on the girl herself. Her initial clinical course was unremarkable. On the morning of admission, ie, on the fifth day after varicella lesions had erupted, mild dysphonia developed. Within three hours, fever, dysphagia, a muffled voice, and progressive dyspnea with perioral cyanosis were noted. She was rushed to the emergency room, and when she