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Tonsillitis. Close-up of an open mouth with inflamed tonsils flecked with infected white patches. This is due to tonsillitis, an infection usually caused by streptococci bacteria. Tonsils are oval-shaped masses of spongy lymphoid tissue on either side of the back of the mouth. They play a role in the body's response to infection. Tonsils produce antibodies for the immune system and trap and destroy micro-organisms that enter the throat. Tonsillitis causes a sore throat, fever and difficulty with swallowing. Treatment involves a course of antibiotic drugs. If it is recurrent and severe, then the tonsils may need to be surgically removed (tonsillectomy).
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