If your child’s tonsils are unusually swollen, minus any other sign of illness, it could be a sign of chronically enlarged tonsils, also known as tonsillitis. The problems associated with enlarged tonsils and adenoids (pharyngeal tonsils) can be prevented by timely intervention by an otolaryngologist. The Plymouth Ears Nose & Throat team has over thirty years of experience dealing with pediatric otolaryngology problems, including chronically enlarged tonsils and adenoids. It’s important to know the difference between healthy and swollen tonsils, the complications of chronically enlarged tonsils, and what can be done to ease your child’s suffering.
Complications of Chronically Enlarged Tonsils
Normal, healthy tonsils are small, rounded lumps at the back of the throat that cause no interference with daily life. Tonsils begin to cause problems when they become infected, enlarged, and obstruct the airway, causing breathing difficulty during both day and night. Untreated infections of tonsils may lead to complications like rheumatic fever, post streptococcal glomerulonephritis, Scarlet fever, peritonsillar abscesses, and deep neck abscesses.
Criteria for Surgery
Aside from tonsils that have enlarged to the point of obstructing the airways, there are a few other pieces of criteria to consider before proceeding with a tonsillectomy:
Developing a severe sore throat several times in one year.
Throat infection is severe enough to cause an abscess of pus and swelling behind the tonsils.
Antibiotics do not help to cure tonsillitis.
When surgical intervention is necessary, safe and reliable techniques delivered in the proper controlled setting are employed to minimize patient and parental anxiety. If your child has been experiencing enlarged tonsils, we are happy to help you set up an appointment and discuss further options with you. We can be reached at 508-746-8977.