Management of pediatric head and neck infections in the emergency department

Pediatr Emerg Med Pract. 2020 Nov;17(11):1-24. Epub 2020 Nov 2.

Abstract

Head and neck infections can spread to nearby structures, compromising the airway and progressing to life-threatening events. Pediatric head and neck infections can be difficult to recognize; emergency clinicians must know the signs and symptoms of head and neck infections for early diagnosis and urgent management in order to prevent complications and decrease hospitalization rates. This issue reviews presenting signs and symptoms of pediatric head and neck infections, discusses when diagnostic studies are indicated, and offers evidence-based recommendations for management. Conditions reviewed include mastoiditis, sinusitis, Ludwig angina, peritonsillar abscess, retropharyngeal abscess, Lemierre syndrome, and acute suppurative thyroiditis.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Anti-Bacterial Agents / therapeutic use
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Emergency Service, Hospital
  • Female
  • Head / pathology*
  • Humans
  • Infections / diagnosis
  • Infections / therapy*
  • Lemierre Syndrome / diagnosis
  • Lemierre Syndrome / therapy
  • Ludwig's Angina / diagnosis
  • Ludwig's Angina / therapy
  • Male
  • Mastoiditis / diagnosis
  • Mastoiditis / therapy
  • Neck / pathology*
  • Pediatric Emergency Medicine*
  • Peritonsillar Abscess / diagnosis
  • Peritonsillar Abscess / therapy
  • Physical Examination / methods
  • Practice Guidelines as Topic*
  • Retropharyngeal Abscess / diagnosis
  • Retropharyngeal Abscess / therapy
  • Sinusitis / diagnosis
  • Sinusitis / therapy
  • Thyroiditis, Suppurative / diagnosis
  • Thyroiditis, Suppurative / therapy

Substances

  • Anti-Bacterial Agents