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Tonsillitis

  • What is Tonsillitis?

    The tonsils are normal structures located on each side of the back of the throat. Tonsils form a part of the immune system and produce antibodies to fight germs that attack the mouth. The tonsils can become infected and, therefore, can enlarge, causing a condition called Tonsillitis. There are two types of tonsillitis:

    • Acute tonsillitis, which refers to the occasional tonsil infection
    • Recurrent tonsillitis, which refers to recurring tonsil infections
  • Viral infection is the main cause of tonsillitis. Infection with streptococcus bacterium can also cause tonsillitis, a condition commonly known as strep throat or a throat infection.

    • Abdominal pain in children
    • Difficulty and pain when swallowing
    • Fever and chills
    • Headache
    • Loss of voice
    • Sore throat
    • Swollen lymph glands at the jaws and neck
    • White spots of pus on the tonsils
  • The treatment for tonsillitis depends on the cause and the severity of the condition. Your doctor will perform a throat swab to check for streptococcal bacteria, or a complete blood cell count to determine the cause of the infection. Depending on the results of your tests, your doctor will recommend the treatment that suits you best:

    • If your tonsillitis is caused by a virus, appropriate home-care is sufficient to treat your condition.
    • If your tonsillitis is caused by a bacteria, your will be prescribed antibiotics. These may be given through injection if your child has difficulty swallowing due to tonsillitis.
    • Tonsillectomy, the surgical removal of the tonsils, may be recommended for children who suffer from recurrent tonsillitis and do not respond to other treatment options.
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