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ACUTE TONSILITIS. (Follicular Inflammation of the Tonsils). Causes

Categories: Infectious Diseases

Authors regard this as an infectious disease. It is met with more

frequently in the young; infants may take it. Some authors state it can be

communicated either through the secretions or by direct contact, as in the

act of kissing (Koplik). It is frequent in children from the second to the

fourth year, but it is more common after than before the fourth year. Sex

has no influence. In this country it is more common in the spring. The
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predisposing causes are exposure to wet and cold and bad hygienic

surroundings. One attack renders a person more susceptible. It spreads

through a family in such a way that it must be regarded as contagious. The

small openings (Lacunae) of the tonsils become filled with products which

form cheesy-looking masses, projecting from the openings of the (Crypts)

hidden sacs. These frequently join together, the intervening tissue is

usually swollen, deep red in color and sometimes a membrane forms on it in

which case it may look like diphtheria.

Symptoms. Chilly feelings or even a chill and aching pains in the back

and limbs may precede the onset. The fever rises rapidly and in the young

child may reach 105 degrees in the evening of the first day. The infant is

restless, peevish and wakeful at night; it breathes rapidly, and there is

high fever and great weakness. Nursing is difficult, not only on account

of the pain in swallowing, but because in the majority of cases there is

more or less inflammation of the nose. The bowels are disturbed as a

result of swallowing infectious secretions from the mouth with the food.

The tonsils are enlarged and studded with whitish or yellowish white

points. The glands at the angle of the jaws may be enlarged. In older

children the tonsils are enlarged and the crypts plugged with a creamy

deposit. The surface is covered with a deposit and the pillars of the

fauces, uvula and pharynx may all be inflamed. The tongue is coated, the

breath is bad, the urine high colored, swallowing is painful; the pain

frequently runs to the ear and the voice sounds nasal, as if one had mush

in his mouth when talking. In severe cases the symptoms all increase, and

the parts become very much swollen. Then the inflammation gradually

subsides, and in a week, as a rule, the fever is gone and the local

conditions have greatly improved. The tonsils, though, remain somewhat

swollen. The weakness and general symptoms are often greater than one

would suppose. The trouble may also extend to the middle ear through the

eustachian tubes.

Diagnosis Between Acute Tonsilitis and Diphtheria. Follicular form. "In

this form the individual, yellowish, gray masses, separated by the reddish

tonsilar tissue are very characteristic, whereas in diphtheria the

membrane is of ashy gray and uniform, not patch."--Osler. A point of the

greatest importance in diphtheria is that the membrane is not limited to

the tonsils, but creeps up the pillars of the fauces or appears on the

uvula. The diphtheric membrane when removed leaves a raw, bleeding, eroded

surface; whereas, the membrane of follicular tonsilitis is easily

separated as there is no raw surface beneath it.

MOTHERS' REMEDIES. 1. Tonsilitis, Raw Onion and Pork for. "Take a raw

onion and some salt pork, chop together, make a poultice on which put a

little turpentine and wrap around the throat." This is a very good remedy

and should be used for some time. Change as often as necessary.

2. Tonsilitis, Peppermint Oil Good for. "Apply peppermint oil thoroughly

on the outside of the throat from well up behind the ear nearly to the

chin, also just in front of the ear. This will soon penetrate through to

the tonsils; apply freely if the case is severe and later apply hot cloths

if relief does not follow without."

3. Tonsilitis, Borax Water for. "One-fourth teaspoonful borax in one cup

of hot water, gargle frequently." This may be used for ordinary sore

throat not quite so strong.

4. Tonsilitis, Salt and Pepper Will Relieve. "Apply salt pork well

covered with pepper to the swollen parts; will often give relief."

5. Tonsilitis, Peroxide of Hydrogen Will Cure. "Tonsilitis and contagious

sore throats are just now extremely popular. Persons having a tendency to

them will seldom be sick if they gargle daily with a solution of peroxide

of hydrogen and water in equal parts for adults. Peroxide diluted with

five parts of water and used as a head spray will prevent catarrhal

colds." Children, are often sent to school immediately after an attack of

tonsilitis, when they should be at home taking a tonic and building up by

a week of outdoor play.

6. Tonsilitis, a Remedy Effective for. "Rub the outside of the throat

well with oil of anise and turpentine, and keep the bowels open." Care

should be taken not to take cold. The anise is very soothing and the

turpentine will help to draw out the soreness. This would be a good remedy

for children.

PHYSICIANS' TREATMENT for Tonsilitis. 1. First Home Treatment. Put the

patient to bed alone in a pleasant room, comfortably warm; for this

disease is recorded as contagious in this form. Cold applied externally

around the sore spot is good. Use an ice bag if you have it; or wring

cloths out of cold water and put just under the jaw and a flannel over

that, bound around the neck. It must be changed often to keep cold.

2. Smartweed. Cloths wrung out of smartweed tea are very good when

applied under the jaw.

3. Salt Pork. Salt pork, well salted and peppered, sewn to a cloth and

applied on both sides, if both are diseased, directly to the lumps is very

good. These can be kept on indefinitely. I have used them.

4. Liniment. A strong blistering liniment applied externally where the

lumps are is also good. These applications tend to withdraw some of the

blood from the sore tonsils, and of course, that relieves them. There are

many such that can be used. Poultices should not be applied for this form

as they tend to hasten formation of pus.

5. Internally. Dip your clean moistened finger tip into dry bicarbonate

of soda (baking soda), rub this gently on the sore tonsil and repeat it

every hour. You can also put one teaspoonful of it in one-half glass of

very hot water and gargle if you do not use it locally.

6. Hot Water. Gargling frequently with very hot water is splendid. If you

wish you can use one teaspoonful of some antiseptic, like listerine, in


7. Thyme. You can make a tea of the common garden thyme and gargle or

rinse your mouth and throat with it every half to one hour. This is not

only healing and soothing, but it is also antiseptic. This is a

constituent of many of the antiseptic preparations.

8. Steaming With Compound Tincture of Benzoin. Tincture of benzoin is

splendid. Put one tablespoonful in a quart of hot water and inhale the

steam. Put a sheet over your head and pitcher; or put it in a kettle, and

roll white writing paper into a funnel, tie one part over the spout and

put the other end in your mouth if possible; or you can inhale simple

steam in the same way. I know this is excellent and often recommended;

everyone has it, and it costs literally nothing, except to heat the water.

9. For the Pain. Dissolve two drams of chloral hydrate in an ounce of

water, use a camel's hair pencil if you have it, or a soft piece of cloth

tied on a smooth stick, and apply directly to the diseased parts. This is

for older persons, relieves the pain very much. There are many other

simple remedies that can be used in this way.

10. MEDICINES. Parke, Davis & Co., Anti-Tonsilitis Tablet No. 645 is very

good. This can be bought at any drug store. For a child give one-half a

tablet every two hours for four doses, then every three hours. An adult

can take one to two every one to three hours according to the severity of

the case.

11. Aspirin. Aspirin is another good remedy; five grains every four hours

for an adult; but used only under doctor's directions.

12. Dr. Hare of Philadelphia, uses 1/200 grain mercurius biniodide (pink

powder) every four to six hours to abort tonsilitis. I would recommend the

following:--Give one-tenth drop dose of a good tincture of aconite and

1/200 grain of the mercury biniodide (one to two tablets a dose) every

hour, alternately, one of them one hour and the next, etc. If there is

much deposit I would put ten tablets of mercury protoiodide (one-tenth of

a grain in a tablet) in one-half glass of water and give two teaspoonfuls

every hour until the bowels move freely, then every three to four hours.

The aconite can be used if there is much fever, with hot, dry skin,

alternately everyone-half hour. I prefer the pink powder when there is no

deposit or membrane. These I have used for years, and know them to be

excellent. For children the dose is about one-half. After twelve hours the

remedies should be given only every three to four hours.