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Learn about your swollen, red tonsils, including causes and common questions. Or get a personalized analysis of your swollen, red tonsils from our A.I. health assistant. At Buoy, we build tools that help you know what’s wrong right now and how to get the right care.

Swollen, Red Tonsils Checker

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Your Swollen, Red Tonsils May Also be Known as:
Enlarged tonsils
Inflamed tonsils
Swollen tonsils

Top 3 Swollen, Red Tonsils Causes

  1. 1.Strep Throat Requiring Throat Swab

    Strep throat is a bacterial throat infection that can make the throat feel sore and scratchy. Only a small portion of sore throats are the result of strep throat. And, if you do not show enough signs of a true strep throat, testing may be needed before treatment is begun.

    You should visit your primary care physician within the next 24 hours, where a diagnosis can be made via a "rapid antigen test" (it's a throat swab). Treatment with simple antibiotics would be given only if the test is positive. It is important to get treatment, however, because of the possibility of getting a disease called "rheumatic fever" after the strep throat infection.

    Rarity:
    Common
    Top Symptoms:
    fatigue, nausea, sore throat, fever, rash
    Symptoms that always occur with strep throat requiring throat swab:
    sore throat
    Symptoms that never occur with strep throat requiring throat swab:
    general weakness
    Urgency:
    Primary care doctor

    Swollen, Red Tonsils Checker

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  2. 2.Mononucleosis Infection

    EBV Mononucleosis is a clinical syndrome characterized by fever, sore throat, and swollen lymph nodes.

    You should visit your primary care physician within the next 24 hours. Diagnosis is confirmed by looking for antibodies against EBV. Treatment involves supportive care (hydration, antipyretics, and analgesics, such as acetaminophen and ibuprofen). Aspirin should not be given to children because of the possibility of Reye syndrome. It is also recommended that you do not do any strenuous physical activity and contact sports in the initial 3 to 4 weeks of illness due to the potential for splenic rupture.

    Rarity:
    Common
    Top Symptoms:
    fatigue, headache, loss of appetite, abdominal pain (stomach ache), cough
    Symptoms that never occur with mononucleosis infection:
    rectal bleeding
    Urgency:
    Primary care doctor
  3. 3.Viral Infection of the Larynx (Voice Box)

    Acute laryngitis is an inflammation of the voice box (larynx) due to infection.The vocal cords are located inside the larynx. Normally, the vocal cords open and close freely, but in laryngitis, they become inflamed. This swelling causes distortion of the sounds produced by air passing over them, making one's resulting voice sound hoarse.

    You can safely treat this medical condition by yourself, as it is likely a viral infection. Home remedies such as gargling with salt water and staying hydrated will likely be enough to restore a lost voice.

    Rarity:
    Common
    Top Symptoms:
    sore throat, fever, runny nose, dry cough, hoarse voice
    Urgency:
    Self-treatment

Questions Your Doctor May Ask About Swollen, Red Tonsils

  • Q.Any fever today or during the last week?
  • Q.Have you been feeling more tired than usual, lethargic or fatigued despite sleeping a normal amount?
  • Q.Do you have a cough?
  • Q.Have you experienced any nausea?

If you've answered yes to one or more of these questions, check our swollen, red tonsils symptom checker.

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Swollen, Red Tonsils Symptom Checker Statistics

  • People who have experienced swollen, red tonsils have also experienced:

    • 14% Sore Throat
    • 5% Cough
    • 4% Headache
  • People who have experienced swollen, red tonsils were most often matched with:

    • 26% Viral Infection of the Larynx (Voice Box)
    • 25% Strep Throat Requiring Throat Swab
    • 11% Mononucleosis Infection
  • Source: Aggregated and anonymized results from visits to the Buoy AI health assistant (check it out by clicking on “Take Quiz”).

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