White patches in throat


You might be tempted when your throat hurts to look in the mirror. What if you see white pus patches instead of redness? While white pus patches can be associated with strep, they are not the only cause of these spots.

Drs. Ines Munoz de Laborde, Svetlana Burkhead, and their team at Physicians Medical Urgent Care, San Jose, California, highlight four possible causes of white pus patches on your throat.

Strep throat

Streptococcus pyogenes causes streptococcal throat Yi, also known as Streptococcal PharyngitisYi. This is a highly contagious bacterial disease that can cause white pus patches on your tonsils or in your throat. A fever, a sore throat that is difficult to swallow, redness of the throat, and a headache are also possible symptoms.

It is important to treat strep throat quickly because untreated strep throat can lead to severe complications. Strep throat is significant to treat quickly because untreated strep throat can lead to severe complications.


Infectious Mononucleosis, Also known as mono Yi, is another reason for white spots on your throat. Mono is not a bacterial infection like strep. A sore throat, white spots, swollen lymph glands, and spleen characterize Mono.

Mono treatment includes at-home remedies such as resting, drinking fluids, and eating a balanced diet.

Oral thrush

A fungus causes the white patches at the back of your throat. The white bumps can sometimes become pus-filled. This infection is easily spread by breastfeeding mothers and babies but can affect anyone. Oral thrush does not cause a sore neck, but the bumps in your mouth may make eating painful. The white patches that look like cottage cheese are not only found on your throat. These patches can also appear on your tongue or cheeks.

Cold sores and oral herpes

White spots on your throat can be caused by oral herpes. These spots may turn white and puss-filled if cold sores develop into blisters. If the blisters burst, turn red, become crusty, and dry up within seven to 10 days, you may be dealing with a Cold Sore. Cold sores do not cause sore throats.

Antiviral drugs and topical medications are used to treat cold sores.

What is causing the white patches of pus in your throat?

Only by visiting our San Jose office in California can you determine what is causing the white patches on your throat. We may order a rapid strep test based on your symptoms, including whether or not you have a sore or dry throat.

Treatments for white patches vary depending on the diagnosis. They can range from antifungals to antibiotics.

Do not wait to make an appointment if your throat is sore and you are concerned about the white pus patches. You can feel better faster if you receive an accurate diagnosis. 

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