Swollen Tonsils with White Spots. What Makes Tonsillitis Virulent?

The disease, characterized by swollen tonsils with white spots is referred to as tonsillitis (angina). It can be caused by bacteria and viruses, or else occur on the ground of blood diseases. Tonsillitis involves the risk of such complications, as abscess, lymphadenitis, sepsis, rheumatism, polyarthritis and pyelonephritis. Therefore, swollen tonsils with spots are an alerting symptom, urging the patient to visit an otolaryngologist.

swollen tonsil

Tonsillitis or commonly referred to as angina (quinsy), is an infectious disease, affecting lymphadenoid ring of the throat. Inflammation of tonsils goes in line with swelling and appearance of pus. Depending on its volume and consistency, pointing to the level of the advancement of the process, it is common to distinguish between catarrhal, lacunar and follicular types of tonsillitis. In the case these bacteria have necrotizing effect, it is appropriate to speak about fusospirochetal gingivitis (Vincent’s angina).

Causes of swelling of tonsils and appearance of white spots on them

Tonsillitis can also be provoked by certain microorganisms and viruses. Streptococcus pyogenes is the classical incitant agent of this disease. It can cause the development of catarrhal, lacunar and follicular types of tonsillitis.

swollen tonsils with white spots

Fusospirochetal tonsillitis is usually being provoked by spirochetes and fusiform bacteria. This type of the disease was first described by three scientists at a time, namely Simanovsky, Vincent, and Plaut Thus it has different names in different countries.

Viral tonsillitis, i.e. infectious mononucleosis, is a standalone case. As long as it mostly affects young people and is proved to be droplet spread, it became popular as the “kissing disease”.

one swollen tonsil with white spots

Sometimes tonsillitis is accompanied by such virulent blood diseases, as agranulocytosis and leucosis. These pathologies involve swelling of tonsils, but in this case white spots in nothing but fur, covering profound ulcers.

Clinical evidence of swollen tonsils with white spots

As long as tonsils feature good blood supply and thick innervations, their inflammation involves rapid and intense process of swelling, which in its turn causes tightening of nerve endings. This can explain the condition of sore throat and painful swallowing (due to mechanical irritation of tonsils).

The incitant agent determines general response of the organism to tonsillitis. Streptococcus usually provokes pronounced immune response in the form of fever, deterioration of general well-being, etc. Whereas, Vincent’s angina supposes almost no clinical symptoms, though it involves insignificant swelling of tonsils and appearance of white membranes, covering the ulcers. This is actually the main threatening factor about Vincent’s angina. Ignoring the sensation of foreign body in the throat while swallowing, as well as bad breath, one can easily leave out this serious disease. However, it can lead to complete decomposition of the affected tonsil, as well as to the proliferation of the infection onto the lower tissues.

Therefore, observing any such symptoms, it is required to try manually to feel the lymph nodes, located on the neck since fusospirochetal tonsillitis usually leads to their enlargement. But even if this appeared to be impossible, it is better to consult a specialist in order to exclude this unpleasant pathology.

Complications after diseases, involving swollen tonsils with white spots

Tonsillitis, particularly, strep throat, is fraught with the development of such aggressive complications, as:

Paratonsillitis – acute inflammation of the connective tissue, surrounding the tonsil;

  • Guttural abscess – occurrence of a “pus bag” in the thickness of the mucous membrane
  • Abscessed cervical lymphadenitis – inflammation of lymphatic nodes;
  • Acute tonsillar sepsis – a critical condition, which is associated with penetration of bacteria into the blood;
  • Rheumatism – autoimmune vascular disease, often caused by previous tonsillitis. The course of this disease is greatly influenced by any allergic reaction to vital activity products of streptococci, which penetrate into the blood with the development of tonsillitis;
  • Acute nephritis and pyelonephritis – kidney diseases;
  • Non-specific infectious polyarthritis – another variant of pathology of joints.

one tonsil swollen

To some extent, tonsillitis in the presence of blood diseases is a form of complication, resulting from decreased immune resistance of the organism. Viral tonsillitis is normally less threatening and has more chances of recovery (in case of adequate treatment under the care of a specialist).

Thus, practically all cases of swelling of tonsils and white spots on them, constitute sufficient ground for qualified otolaryngological examination, with subsequent effective therapy that will help in preventing possible complications.