Should I be worried if I can see my epiglottis?

When to see a doctor

Epiglottitis is a medical emergency. If you or someone you know suddenly has trouble breathing and swallowing, call your local emergency number or go to the nearest hospital emergency department. Try to keep the person quiet and upright, because this position may make it easier to breathe.

Why is my epiglottis showing?

It’s often caused by an infection, but can also sometimes happen as a result of a throat injury. The epiglottis is a flap of tissue that sits beneath the tongue at the back of the throat. Its main function is to close over the windpipe (trachea) while you’re eating to prevent food entering your airway.

Why can I suddenly see my child’s epiglottis?

The main cause of epiglottitis in children is a bacterial infection that can be spread through the upper respiratory tract. Most cases are caused by the bacteria Haemophilus influenzae type B (Hib). Experts don’t exactly know why some children get this health problem, and others do not.

What triggers opening of epiglottis?

The epiglottis is a leaf-shaped flap in the throat that prevents food and water from entering the windpipe and the lungs. It stays open during breathing, allowing air into the larynx.
Anatomical terminology

Is it normal to see your epiglottis in adults?

Visible epiglottis is a rare anatomical variant which is usually asymptomatic without the need of any medical or surgical intervention. It is most commonly seen in children but there are some reports of its prevalence in adults too.

Can epiglottis go away on its own?

Most people with epiglottitis recover without problems. However, when epiglottitis is not diagnosed and treated early or properly, the prognosis is poor, and the condition can be fatal. Epiglottitis also can occur with other infections in adults, such as pneumonia.

Is epiglottitis a symptom of Covid?

COVID-19 infection is well documented to cause upper respiratory tract symptoms, and as such we believe that in the absence of any other positive microbiological investigations, it is highly likely that COVID-19 was the aetiological cause of acute epiglottitis in this instance.

Is a high rising epiglottis normal?

An omega-shaped epiglottis is frequently associated with laryngomalacia. However, an elongated high- rising epiglottis can represent a normal variation of the larynx in a majority of pediatric patients.

What causes adult epiglottitis?

Epiglottitis is usually caused by an infection from Haemophilus influenza type b (Hib) bacteria, the same bacteria that cause pneumonia and meningitis. Transmission of the bacteria is the same as with the common cold: Droplets of saliva or mucus are spread into the air when a carrier of the bacteria coughs or sneezes.