Peritonsillar abscesses are a complication of tonsillitis. They generally occur as a result of untreated tonsillitis or strep throat. Essentially bacterial infections, peritonsillar abscesses usually form pus-filled pockets near one of the tonsils. This type of infection most often affects young children and teens. The abscesses can also be caused by mononucleosis. Only in very rare cases will symptoms of peritonsillar abscesses develop without an infection.
Fever is a typical symptom associated with peritonsillar abscesses. Fever often indicates the body is fighting an infection. If fever is masked by over-the-counter fever-reducing medications, parents might at first overlook an underlying condition such as strep throat.
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