Tonsillitis - Complications
Let us put some light on complications of long standing tonsils problem or acute throat infections:
- Peritonsillar abscess:
Some individuals have a tendency to develop an abscess (also known as quinsy medically) several days after onset of Tonsillitis Symptoms. The abscess clinically presents as a pus-filled sac that forms between the wall of the throat and the back of one of the tonsils.
- Spread of infection:
- Bacteria present in the abscess may infect the surrounding area like the nearby vein which could infect the blood and give rise to septicemia. This condition, also called as Lemierre's syndrome, can be fatal if not treated quickly and appropriately.
- Infection from the tonsils may also spread to the middle ear resulting in its infection.
- Crypt formation:
The bacteria can also colonize in the pits on the surface of the tonsils resulting in the formation of crypts. These crypts are yellow or white in color and form foul smelling stones called tonsilloliths.
- Breathing difficulty:
Tonsils get inflamed severely and almost touch each other (also called kissing tonsils). This may lead to snoring, disturbed sleep and mouth breathing. This condition is known as obstructive apnea.
- Streptococcus Infection:
Streptococcal infection of the tonsils can lead to complications such as rheumatic fever which may affect the heart valves and the joints or glomerulonephritis which is infection of the kidney.
Tonsils are an important component of the immune system and should not be removed unless required. Timely intervention with the best treatment option would save you from complications of tonsillitis.