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Forum Name: Surgery Topics

Question: Tonsilectomy. Have they grown back??


 putmeright - Thu Jan 05, 2006 2:43 pm

I really need some advice. I have been suffering from infections and flus constantley since October last year (05). Ive now fallen terribly unwell and a nurse diognosed me with tonsilitis. I told her afterwards that i had a tonsilectomy 8 years ago and she then said i had flu. The area where my tonsils were is covered in white spots, i'm feverish, tired and aching. Have they grown back? What advice can someone give me??
 Dr. Tino Anthony Solomon - Wed Oct 11, 2006 1:03 pm

Hello there,

Yes your 'tonsils' or at least the lymphoid tissue that constitutes them can grow back, this is a common occurrence as with many types of tissue in the body which retain their ability to regenerate, notable exceptions being the heart and nerve cells. Lymphoid tissue consists of collections of cells in one space that trap and destroy harmful microbes circulating round the body or entering the body from external sources. You will have lymphoid tissue in many areas in your body such as your colon and neck.

When the tissue at the site of your tonsils grows back they rarely grow to the size children have since we develop other immunological mechanisms that are well adapted to the threat of microbes. The lymphoid tissue consists of crypts and these can harbour bacteria and fungi that replicate and express themselves. The white spots you describe may be due to discharging pus from these crypts due to a bacterial infection or may be colonies of a fungus such as the Candida species. Both can cause a sore throat and generalised weakness although bacterial infections tend to be more serious as they advance more rapidly. They can both be treated effectively.

It is difficult to diagnose the exact cause of these spots unless the area is examined visually and even then samples will need to be sent off to be looked at under a microscope in a laboratory. If you are feeling systemically unwell I urge you to go to your family physician who should arrange for you to see an ENT (Ear Nose and Throat) specialist soon.


Kind Regards,

Dr Tino Solomon
Senior House Officer in Surgery
BSc(Hons) MB BS

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