JOHN BAVOSI / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY JOHN BAVOSI / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Tonsillitis. Artwork of the open mouth and throat of a patient with inflamed tonsils. They are flecked with infected yellow patches, 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 help the body respond to infection, producing antibodies for the immune system and trapping and destroying 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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