Inflammation or swelling of the tonsils from frequent or ongoing (chronic) tonsillitis can cause complications such as:
- Difficulty breathing
- Disrupted breathing during sleep (obstructive sleep apnea)
- Infection that spreads deep into surrounding tissue (tonsillar cellulitis)
- Infection that results in a collection of pus behind a tonsil (peritonsillar abscess)
If tonsillitis caused by group A streptococcus or another strain of streptococcal bacteria isn't treated, or if antibiotic treatment is incomplete, your child has an increased risk of rare disorders such as:
July 17, 2015
- Rheumatic fever, an inflammatory disorder that affects the heart, joints and other tissues
- Poststreptococcal glomerulonephritis, an inflammatory disorder of the kidneys that results in inadequate removal of waste and excess fluids from blood
- Fact sheet: Tonsils and adenoids. American Academy of Otolaryngology — Head and Neck Surgery. http://www.entnet.org/?q=node/1432. Accessed June 2, 2015.
- Fact sheet: Tonsillitis. American Academy of Otolaryngology — Head and Neck Surgery. http://www.entnet.org/?q=node/1447. Accessed June 2, 2015.
- Tonsillopharyngitis. Merck Manual Professional Version. http://www.merckmanuals.com/professional/ear-nose-and-throat-disorders/oral-and-pharyngeal-disorders/tonsillopharyngitis. Accessed June 2, 2015.
- Paradise. Tonsillectomy and/or adenoidectomy in children: Indications and contraindications. http://www.uptodate.com/ home. Accessed June 1, 2015.
- Papadakis MA, et al, eds. Ear, nose, & throat disorders. In: Current Medical Diagnosis & Treatment 2014. 53rd ed. New York, N.Y.: The McGraw-Hill Companies; 2014. http://accessmedicine.com. Accessed June 2, 2015.
- Fact sheet: Tonsils and adenoids: Postop. American Academy of Otolaryngology — Head and Neck Surgery. http://www.entnet.org/content/tonsillectomy-and-adenoids-postop. Accessed June 2, 2015.
- Ferri FF. Tonsillitis. In: Ferri's Clinical Advisor 2015. Philadelphia, Pa.: Mosby Elsevier; 2015. http://www.clinicalkey.com. Accessed June 2, 2015.
- Stopping the spread of germs at home, work and school. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. http://www.cdc.gov/flu/protect/stopgerms.htm. Accessed June 2, 2015.
- NINDS Reye's syndrome information page. National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke. http://www.ninds.nih.gov/disorders/reyes_syndrome/reyes_syndrome.htm. Accessed June 2, 2015.
- What is the role of aspirin in triggering Reye's? National Reye's Syndrome Foundation. http://www.reyessyndrome.org/aspirin.html. Accessed June 2, 2015.
- Hoecker JL (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. June 4, 2015.
- Orvidas LJ (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. June 16, 2015.