Uvulitis is a topic covered in the 5-Minute Emergency Consult.

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Uvulitis refers to any inflammatory condition involving the uvula. Uvulitis can be separated into 2 broad categories:
  • Infectious:
    • Bacterial
    • Viral
    • Candidal
  • Traumatic or noninfectious


Incidence and Prevalence Estimates
  • Exact incidence is unknown owing to limited reporting
  • Once thought to be rare but may in fact be more common (e.g., viral etiologies)
  • Children (age 5–15) more often affected than adults due to prevalence of group A streptococcal infections in this age group
  • Noninfectious causes more common than infectious causes in adult population


  • Infectious:
    • Bacterial:
      • Group A streptococcal infection (GAS), most common
      • Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib)
      • Other bacterial infections (Fusobacterium nucleatum, Provetella intermedia, Streptococcus pneumonia)
    • Viral:
      • Not well reported but suspected in mild/transient cases
      • Known to cause uvular lesions however rare in isolation
      • Coxsackie virus (other enteroviruses)
      • Herpes simplex virus
      • Varicella-zoster virus
      • Epstein–Barr virus
    • Candidal infections
  • Noninfectious:
    • Trauma/procedure related
    • Inhalation/ingestion of chemical or thermal irritants
    • Vasculitis
    • Allergic
    • Angioedema:
      • Hereditary
      • Medication induced (e.g., Angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitor [ACEi], Angiotensin receptor blocker [ARB])

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