Sialadenitis (bacterial infection of a salivary gland) Sialadenitis is a painful infection that usually is caused by staphylococcus, streptococcus, Haemophilus influenzae or anaerobic bacteria. Although it is very common among elderly adults with salivary gland stones, sialadenitis also can occur in infants during the first few weeks of life. Many things increase the risk of this condition, including dehydration, recent surgery, prematurity, malnutrition, eating disorders, chronic illness, cancer, medications (antihistamines, diuretics, psychiatric medications, beta-blockers, barbiturates), Sjgren\'s syndrome and certain occupations (trumpet playing, glass blowing). Without proper treatment, sialadenitis can develop into a severe infection, especially in people who are debilitated or elderly.
Symptoms may include a tender, painful lump in the cheek or under the chin; a foul-tasting discharge of pus from the duct into the mouth; and in severe cases, fever, chills and malaise (a generally sick feeling).
You can lower your risk of viral infections of the salivary glands by being immunized against mumps and influenza.
Although there are no specific guidelines to protect against other types of salivary gland disorders, it is helpful to do the following:
After you describe your symptoms, the doctor will review your medical history, smoking history, current medications and diet. The doctor also may ask whether you:
Next, your doctor will examine your head and neck, including the area inside your mouth. The doctor will press gently on areas of your cheeks and jaw to feel for lumps, areas of tenderness and salivary gland stones. Then, depending on your symptoms, history and physical findings, the doctor may order one or more of the following tests:
With prompt antibiotic treatment, the prognosis is usually very good. The highest risk of complications is in elderly people and those with chronic, debilitating illnesses.
Treatment includes drinking fluids or receiving fluids intravenously (through a vein); antibiotics; warm compresses on the infected gland; and encouraging saliva flow by chewing sour, sugarless candies or by drinking orange juice. If these methods do not cure the infection, surgery can be done to drain the gland.