Hi everyone. This is my first time posting here although I've been a regular visitor to the forum for the past few months. I've come for some advice as I've been suffering with tonsillitis for the past 5 weeks and I'm not sure what to do.
I'm 22 and as far as I can remember I've never really had any significant problems with my tonsils or with sore throats before now. On 17th November this year I suddenly came down with pretty severe strep throat. I went to a GP who prescribed some antibiotics (Biravid/Ofloxacin - 3 day course). Unfortunately I was due to travel on the 18th so wasn't able to see my regular GP for a few days. I began taking the antibiotics but they didn't really have any effect so I went to my normal GP on the 23rd November. By that stage my symptoms had somewhat subsided but I still had enlarged tonsils and my throat felt uncomfortable. I was put on a 5-day course of penicillin (Amoxycillin) which seemed to clear up the infection but unfortunately it returned two days later. I was then put on a 7-day course of Chlorom (chlarythramyacin) (sp?), Two days after I finished this course of medication, my throat still didn't feel right and I had phlegm and a bad taste in the back of my throat. When I returned to my GP he said the oral antibiotics didn't seem to be working and suggested I be admitted to hospital for intravenous medication. I was admitted on 11th December and was put on a higher dosage of penicillin to be administered every 6 hours. I was then discharged on 14th December and given another 7-day course of antibiotics. I finished these last Monday 21st and today I started to see the same symptoms returning. My tonsils have become very enlarged and my throat feels uncomfortable and I'm constantly tired.
I should say that my tonsils have never really been very sore over the course of this infection apart from maybe the first few days. It's really just been an uncomfortable feeling and I seem to sleep a LOT (regularly 10-12 hours ) and even still I find it difficult to wake up and get out of bed and I am still tired during the day and just lack the energy to do anything. I realise this may be due to my body trying to fight infection etc.. I'm not sure. When I was hospitalized, they ran blood tests and according to the cert I received I had a white blood cell count of 18.4 (18400 I guess) which the ENT consultant said was quite high. Also, neither my GP nor the hospital did a throat culture (possibly something to do with budget cutbacks here I'm told, lol - but I was told I did not have Glandular fever by the doc in the hospital)
I guess my question is for any who has experienced or is experiencing similar symptoms. I saw two ENT specialists while I was in hospital. The first on didn't recommend tonsillectomy as he saw this as an isolated case (although severe). The second (more senior) ENT doctor seemed to indicate that the removal of the tonsils would be the best option and even offered to carry out the procedure on the 18th December. I decided to wait and see if the infection cleared up and then decide what would be the best course of action for me.
I am due to meet with the ENT specialist (senior guy) on 14th January and I know he is going to recommend I get my tonsils removed. At the moment I'd agree because they are so swollen but I'm afraid I'd be making the wrong decision. I would be extremely interested to hear anyone else's advice on the subject before I go back and meet the surgeon. Thanks for reading my post! Sorry it was so long
Last edited by friendface; 12-25-2009 at 08:49 PM.
Reason: Extra info
Hope you get some answers. I was surprised that they gave you penicillan in the IV and not something stronger? The clarithomycin from what i remember is usually prescribed in 10-14 day therapies..
Removal might be the option. Did you end up having a throat culture yet? I would just be afraid to have this infection in my body for so long. From what i hear, recovering from tonsillectomy takes a few weeks, but the pain might be less then what you are feeling now.
Sorry, I don't think I was put on IV penicillin, my mistake there. It could have been Augmentin, I'm not sure. I was put on 625mg Augmentin 3 times a day for a week after I left the hospital.
I never had a throat culture taken. I don't think it's covered under the medical scheme here for some reason. I just saw another GP who didn't recommend I take any more antibiotics as she felt I had already been on them for long enough and she couldn't see any obvious serious infection. My tonsils are currently quite enlarged and inflamed but there is no obvious bacterial infection that would be responsive to oral antibiotics. She prescribed some more Augmentin only to be taken if my condition gets worse. Other than that, I think I'm just going to have to wait it out til my consultation on 14th January and ultimately getting a tonsillectomy. Not looking forward to that.
They were never prescribed and I don't know whether I can get the over-the-counter at the pharmacy? If they would take down the swelling that'd be great. I'll see if I can get them when I'm picking up my antibiotic prescription tomorrow. Thanks for your advice!
Hi there, I'm not sure what the cause of your Tonsilitis is, however i feel for you as i was a cronic sufferer during my teenage years!!! And then did not know much about the disease, but now have a much better understanding so here's what i have learned over the years...
There are a few causes of tonsilitus, most comonly caused by viruses, or often a nasty bacterium called Streptococcus. Most often it is spead from a cold, or from saliver or sneezing... Hence the common name "the kissing disease". There is also another cause that most physicians or doctors will almost certainly not know or think about let alone inform you of, and that is; Food allergies, particularly to dairy products are also associated with recurrent tonsillitis. That has been the cause of my reacuring tonsilitus & it wasnt untill i had an allergy test & saw a naturapath that i found this out & changed my diet, amazingly after suffering every couple of months for years, i have never had the disease since! I also treated it with rescue remedy drops of "golden seal" 5 drops in half a glass of water. Golden seal is a natural remedy that kills of infections. The first time i took the drops i doubled the dose 10 drops in half a glass of water as my thoat was soo inflamed that i could not eat. after a matter of minutes I could feel no pain & after about half an hour i managed to eat. I could not believe it after trying antibiotics for years & still always getting it back!!!
Ok so this may not be your cause, but if it's stuck around for soo long after ALL THOSE ANTIBIOTICS i would be thinking you have either have a girlfriend/boyfriend you keep kissing & reinfecting yourself (as it is contagious through saliver), or you may have a diary product allergy... If you don't have this allergy, i would highly recomend staying right away from diary while you have tonsilitus anyway as it will only increase the symptoms!!!
One more point with tonsilitectomies... They are perminant, & deffinately something to think about seriously!!! I don't think there is too much after affects with them though unless you are a singer, If you are a singer, I would not recomend it at all, as they can & almost deffinatly will effect your voice afterwards!!!
I hope my experiences can help with your decisions & hope you get better soon!!!
Also just found this online on the blackmores website...
Herbs such as Echinacea and Andrographis are used to treat throat infections and work by improving the body's immune function
Zinc lozenges have been shown to reduce the number of days of a sore throat associated with the common cold
Herbs such as marshmallow, thyme and licorice have traditionally been used for relief of sore throats"
Just wanted to update my situation. My throat infection became worse after I visited my GP and I decided it would be best to take the Augmentin Duo (625mg) she prescribed with the hope of clearing up the infection. I began taking the medication on 01-01-2010 and finished the 7-day course. I also began taking vitamin supplements as well as Vitamin C and Zinc to try to boost my immune system. After I finished the antibiotics, my lymph nodes on the left side of my neck all swelled up quite severely. They are still swollen as I type this reply.
I returned to hospital for my appointment with an ENT consultant on 15th January. She just looked at my tonsils and immediately said they were huge and I would need the tonsillectomy. She also thought there was still an active infection after feeling the swollen lymph nodes and put me on Augmentin Duo (500mg) twice a day for 7 days. I took the antibiotics for 4 days and didn't really notice an improvement so decided to return to my GP. He reckoned the Augmentin was not working and recommended I switch to Clorom (250mg Chlarithramycin) twice a day for 5 days. I just finished this course of medication this evening and have yet to see any improvement in my condition.
At the moment, I believe that my infection is resistant to the anti-biotics I've been prescribed. Since I can't have a tonsillectomy while an active infection is present, I'm not sure what to do. Will I have to be admitted to hospital for IV treatment again?
Currently, I have the following symptoms:
Swollen Tonsils (with small white patch on one)
Sleeping Difficulty (Due to swollen tonsils/adenoids)
Some body aches
Severely swollen lymph nodes on left side of neck
Pinkish sputum - Didn't mention this before as I thought it was normal during bacterial infection
I'd appreciate any advice as I'm tired of attending doctor's who are really no wiser on what to recommend. At the moment I'm just being pumped with antibiotics which I believe are probably doing more harm than good. I've nearly been on antibiotics now constantly for over 2 months (wasn't taking medication for about 8 days in December). I'm being treated for strep but a throat culture has not even been taken to confirm I have strep bacteria in my throat. The only tests that have been done are blood tests (which confirmed I have a high WBC count) and mono-spot test which was negative.
Over the past few hours my throat has begun to get sore and I've noticed a few more white spots on my tonsils. From what I can tell, I probably do have a recurring strep infection which is apparently resistant to chlarythromycin. I don't know whether it's resistant to Penicillin-based antibiotics although they don't seem to get rid of my infection unless administered in very high dosage. The last time I began to feel my throat infection was subsiding was when I was in hospital with IV antibiotics and steroids. The last Augmentin prescription I was given was 500mg taken twice a day whereas I had previously been given 625mg three times a day. The 500mg prescription did not seem to be working and instead just seemed to mask the problem. However, the Clorom (Chlarythromycin) I'm currently taking does not seem to have any effect on the bacteria, rather my infection has got worse since I switched medication. Perhaps I should ask to be placed back on a very high-dose Augmentin? Unfortunately, my GP won't be in until Monday so I may have to wait until then to get a prescription or else attend the out-of hours doctor who would not be familiar with my case.
Currently the following addition symptoms have presented themselves ;
More blood-tinged phlegm (Sorry for the horrible image )
I'm worried that having strep infection in my system for so long is going to have serious side-effects for me.
Hope you are doing better now. I am also feeling bad due to my throat and almost every 2 months I fele tired and have a feeling of low grade temperature for afew weeks. First my doctor said I have tonsillitis, then I asked him to do a scope and he told me I have LPR. I feel that reflux can cause a lot of throat issues as I also started getting mucus feeling. So check maybe you have one of those, or both. Good luck