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You are here : 3-RX.com > Medical Encyclopedia > Diseases and Conditions > Tonsillitis: Symptoms & Signs
      Category : Health Centers > Throat Disorders


Alternate Names : Acute Tonsillitis, Subacute Tonsillitis, Chronic Tonsillitis

Tonsillitis | Symptoms & Signs | Diagnosis & Tests | Prevention & Expectations | Treatment & Monitoring

What are the signs and symptoms of the infection?

There are three forms of tonsillitis:

  • acute, with rapid onset of significant symptoms
  • subacute, with a slow onset of less obvious symptoms
  • chronic, with intermittent symptoms that persist over time
  • Symptoms of acute tonsillitis include:

  • the rapid onset of severe sore throat that worsens over time
  • moderate to high fever
  • difficulty swallowing
  • red, enlarged tonsils that may or may not have pus on the surface or in the pits
  • swollen or tender lymph nodes below the jaw
  • Symptoms of subacute tonsillitis can last from 3 weeks to 3 months, and include:

  • somewhat enlarged tonsils
  • foul-smelling, pasty, infected material that collects inside the pits on the tonsils
  • fluctuating mild to moderate sore throat
  • bad breath
  • foul taste in the mouth
  • mildly swollen, tender lymph nodes
  • Symptoms of chronic tonsillitis include:

  • enlarged, mildly red tonsils that are scarred with large pits
  • slightly enlarged lymph nodes that are not usually tender
  • sore throat that comes and goes

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    Tonsillitis: Overview, Causes, & Risk Factors


    Tonsillitis: Diagnosis & Tests

    Author: William Stevens, MD
    Reviewer: Eileen McLaughlin, RN, BSN
    Date Reviewed: 08/09/01

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