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Difficulty in Swallowing (Dysphagia) and throat pain(Odynophagia) as a complication of recent SARS Covid-19 infection.

Difficulty in Swallowing, throat pain, and voice problems post-Covid.

Irrespective of the severity of covid-19 infection, and whether the patient who was infected was in the hospital or managed conservatively at home, some people might have difficulty in swallowing or eating, and drinking and a feeling of something stuck in the throat.

What are the causes of swallowing difficulty and throat pain, post Covid-19?

While Covid itself is known to cause a multitude of symptoms right from a stuffy nose, headache, cough, cold, and breathing difficulty, the feeling of difficulty in swallowing and throat irritation may be a lingering symptom in a fair number of patients.
It may also be secondary to medicines that are conventionally used as a part of treating the infection viz., doxycycline.

When to Get Help?

Some people heal quickly and do not require much support. But others will require more time and help in their recovery. If you require extra help, it is advisable to meet a specialist in gastrointestinal disorders.

If You Are in Hospital

Tell your primary care physician or nurse. If you had a tube to help you to breathe, you might have difficulty in swallowing which could last up to 3 weeks but many people feel better much sooner.

Voice Problems after COVID-19

You might have a sore throat if you have been coughing a lot or if you required a breathing tube in hospital. Voice problems could take 3 to 4 weeks to recover.

If you have a sore throat you better avoid:

  • Continuous, deliberate throat clearing
  • Shouting or forcing your voice out
  • Deliberate whispering – it doesn’t ‘save’ the voice, it puts pressure on the voicemail
  • Drinking a lot of caffeine and alcohol
  • Smoking
  • Dusty environments

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