Your tonsils are small lumps of tissue in the back of your throat. Tonsils help fight infection but sometimes get infected themselves.
An abscess is a pocket of pus. A tonsillar abscess is a pocket of pus behind one of your tonsils.
A tonsillar abscess usually starts with a simple throat infection that gets worse and can cause:
Sometimes, a tonsillar abscess also causes:
Doctors can often tell if you have a tonsillar abscess by looking in your throat for:
Sometimes, doctors use CT scan or ultrasound to tell if you have a tonsillar abscess. Other times, they put in a needle to see if there's any pus.