Throat Infection Presenting With Pus Pockets- Possibly a Tonsillar Cyst
Q: Hi, 10 days ago, I noticed a white spot in my throat while I was brushing. I immediately went to a doctor. Behind the white spot there is a small round and soft bubble around the tonsils. It is not painful. I can eat and drink; there is no fever. The doctor prescribed Amoxicillin, which I started the same day. The bubble is still there; there is no growth or pain. I only had cold like symptoms for a couple of days and they are now gone. Should I be concerned? What is this yellowish reddish bubble in my throat? Thank you.
– By Michael
Sounds like an infection. The white spot you noticed at first could be a small pocket of collected pus.
Such presentations are common in throat infections. Our pharynx (inside part of the upper neck) is rich in lymphoid tissue (also called tonsillar tissue). During infections of this area, it is common to have whitish streak or spots inside the throat. These are nothing but small areas of collected pus.
You are rightly taking your antibiotics. Do take the whole course (regimen) of the prescribed medicine. This is important as incompletely treated infections usually come back with more resistance to get treated.
The yellowish bubble inside your throat could be a tonsillar cyst. These are very small fluid filled vesicles found in area near the tonsils. Fluid inside may be clear, yellowish (collected phlegm) or even reddish (blood stained).
What Are Tonsil Cysts?
In people with frequent upper respiratory tract infections (URI) or sinus infections, a phenomenon called post nasal drip occurs. Just like our nose visibly drains from outside during infections, it also drains from behind (post nasal). This drainage goes into the throat and causes irritation there. This may give us symptoms like cough and may sometimes lead to formation of tonsil cysts. These are nothing but small vesicular swelling filled with inflammatory substances.
Tonsillar cysts are entirely different from tonsil stones (tonsilolith).
Usually the patient is on antibiotics for some throat infection. These blisters also respond to it and go away in course of time. Nothing else needs to be done.
Intervention is required in the following cases:
- The blister starts increasing in size.
- It becomes painful.
- Causes difficulty in swallowing food.
If any of the above symptom is present, you will be required to see an ENT specialist. He may take a biopsy of the cyst and consider excising it.
It would be beneficial to refrain from smoking till you have that blister to avoid irritating it. Gargling with any medicated solution can be done.