Peritonsillar abscess is a painful medical condition and occurs when a certain amount of infected material accumulates in areas around and nearing the tonsils. The condition is these days very rare, for antibiotics have played a significant role in prevention of the condition though timely diagnosis is the key contributor.
There are numerous causes of the painful condition; simply put you can look at Peritonsillar abscess as a form of tonsillitis complication. A bacteria called the group A beta-hemolytic streptococcus is largely responsible for the outbreak of pus accumulation in your throat.
The treatment for tonsillitis and Peritonsillar abscess is done in similar ways, and antibiotics have proven to be an effective cure given that timely medication took place. The younger ones around the age of 7 – 25 are more prone to the condition.
You will need to keep an eye out for the symptoms very closely, you cannot miss to be hit by the Peritonsillar abscess and realize it too late. It starts with either one or both of the tonsils becoming infected. This infection then gradually spreads out and extends to behind the tonsil. In worse case scenarios, it can also spread down deeper, stretching far into the neck and reaching your chest too. The infection leads to tissues swelling, which can easily block the airway. Don’t underestimate Peritonsillar abscess, this is the next level of tonsils and can prove to be a life-threatening medical emergency if not dealt with properly.
In extreme cases, the abscess can even break open and seep contents down the throat into the lungs, leading to pneumonia and related serious medical complications. The symptoms are also inclusive of:
⦁ Fever and chills
⦁ Severe pain in throat, which is usually limited to one side
⦁ A difficulty when opening the mouth
⦁ Pangs of pain when opening the mouth
⦁ Problems with Swallowing
⦁ Inability to swallow your own saliva and hence “Drooling”
⦁ Keep an eye out for neck or facial swelling
⦁ Your voice may get Muffled
⦁ Tenderness or stiffness in the glands of the throat and the jaw
Examinations and Tests
An examination of the throat will often show a swelling on just one side of the throat, and on the upper part of the mouth, right behind your teeth and above your tongue you can call it the roof of your mouth. Chances are that the uvula at the back of your throat might as well be shifted away and it can be so from the swelling.
For the confirmation of this condition, a medical counselor may suggest any or a combination of the tests:
⦁ The use of a needle for an aspiration of the painful abscess.
⦁ A CT scan
A timely diagnosis will lead to a simpler treatment with antibiotics and a delayed would mean that the infected area will need to be cut open or pricked with a needle to drain out the pus, anesthesia of a very low potency will be given to you before the draining of your wounds commence. In case you are having your tonsils removed too, you will be put on general anesthesia and for as long as you are under it’s affect the process will be painless.