Isolated cases of tonsillitis strike campus

by Katey Wright

With the cold-and-flu season upon Iowa, tonsillitis has alreadymade its appearance on campus.

“I have seen some pretty sore-looking throats this year,” campusnurse Michelle Cross said.

Tonsils are gland tissues located on both sides of the throat.They trap bacteria that enter the throat and create antibodies tofight infection. When tonsils get infected and swell, tonsillitismay be to blame.

Symptoms of tonsillitis may include a severe sore throat,difficulty or pain swallowing, headaches, fever and chills,enlarged glands in the jaw and neck and changes in or a loss ofvoice.

“Just because you have these [symptoms] does not mean that onecould not have something else,” Cross said. “For example, strepthroat has many of the same symptoms.”

Most people associate tonsillitis with a tonsillectomy or theremoval of the tonsils.

“If I see a throat that looks really sore and is accompanied bya fever, I will refer the student to the doctor,” Cross said.

Freshman Sara Lawson experienced a tonsillectomy a couple ofyears ago.

“I threw up and it was pretty painful, but I haven’t had as manysore throats,” Lawson said.

Between 250,000 and 500,000 tonsillectomies are performed eachyear, but there are things that can be done to help reduce the riskof getting tonsillitis.

The most effective prevention is proper hand washing to avoidthe dispersion of germs.