Undiagnosed Symptoms Community
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Avatar universal

severe Swollen Sore Throat and Unknown puffy swelling on right side of mouth

To give some context to my current problem:
February 2006: Strep, given Penicillin(Failed - Amoxicillin worked)
June 2006: Sore throat, presumed Viral.
End of June: Tonsils covered in puss red and swollen (rapid strep negative)prescribed amoxicillin (worked)
July: Shortly after finishing amox throat becomes sore again. Prescribed APO-AZITHROMYCIN, throat worsened. Prescribed PMS-CIPROFLOXACIN 500MG as well as some APO-BENZYDAMINE throat gargle.

After 5 days of treatment my tonsils and uvula are severely swollen with a some white specs on the tonsils. The pain has intensified on my right side. I can see the right side has a reddish swelling that starts from the puffy gum and proceeds up along the wall of my mouth near the back and appears to be pushing on my right tonsil. I also noticed it stems up towards the roof of my mouth a little. It hurts when touched and feels softer than the other side of my mouth.

Goggling these symptoms produces what is called a Peritonsillar Abscess. So I visited a trusted family doctor - he suspects a viral infection. I asked if it could be an abscess and he said I didnt look toxic and seemed confidant it was not. I'm waiting on the results of the blood test and culture he ordered but I'm still worried that this may be something more serious.

It is the most pain I've ever experienced with a sore throat, talking hurts - i sound muffled and eating is painful. I have not been drowsy or feverish and am hungry (have been trying to drink protein shakes). I'm a 21yr old male, typically healthy, eat well and exercise.
10 Responses
Avatar universal
It does sound like a peritonsillar abscess to me...i would make an appt with an ENT dr since this has been going on for quite a while.    good luck
Avatar universal
the other thought is a tooth abscess.....have you seen a dentist lately?
Avatar universal
Yes, I visited the dentist when i noticed the swelling above my wisdom tooth. He poked where the actual tooth would be and I didnt have any pain there.

I'm waiting to get an appt with an ENT but as far as I know that could take up to a month.

Thanks for the comments, if anyone else has any ideas I'd love to hear them. I've been running from doctor to doctor with no luck whatsoever and its not fun with this kind of pain. I'm going to wait for the results of the blood work on Thursday and if that shows nothing unusual I'm going to get a 4th opinion.
Avatar universal
Bit of breaking news here, I went to go check my tonsils under a powerful light/mirror in the bathroom to see if the swelling went down. What I saw was a line of puss on the right swollen side of my mouth - I thought it had gotten worse. The opposite, I poked around with a q-tip and noticed that this puss was actually leaking out of the swollen area. It had somehow been punctured in a small area and puss was flowing out. I put pressure on the swolen areas and more would come out. This is the first time I've even felt slightly better since getting sick.

so I guess a new question now, should I continue to drain it myself or should I go back to the doctor.

I guess this really shows that while it is important to see a doctor for any concerns, it is equally important to question their diagnosis - get second opinions and monitor it yourself. I saw three different doctors and a dentist on the matter.
Avatar universal
I would be concerned about the puss, simply because it sounds as if the locationg of the swollen area, you would be swallowing the puss.  Sounds nasty, and I would be concerned about the infected substance being swallowed.

I know that its difficult to get an appt with an ENT...however, depending on where you live, you should have more than a few options.  Where I'm from, there are ENT's everywhere!

This is definitely something for a specialist, although your bloodwork will show either viral or bacterial infection.  It is not impossible to be a "carrier" of strep.  Usually, though, a carrier doesn't always have chronic symptoms.  Also, it doesn't sound as if your antibiotics are exceptionally strong.  There are many other options out there, and it does sound as if you have a bacterial infection.  I know several people who have been on preventative antibiotics for chronic throat issues.  Definitely seek another opinion, and fast.  I'm not sure I would advise poking around on your own, although I have to admit that if it relieved pressure, I would probably do the same thing.

Good luck, and I hope you find some relief soon.  If all else fails, maybe you could contact the nurse and let her know of your new developments.  She could advise you of whether or not to continue messing with it on your own.
Avatar universal
After considering all of the above, I have some doubts as to whether or not your blood work will be accurate.  Oftentimes, after being on so many antibiotics, the result will be falsely negative, when in fact you do (obviously) have an infection of some kind.  
Also, and on the flip side, you said you don't have a fever, which is also unusual for this kind of infection.  I guess, though, that the antibiotics could have helped with the systemic infection, and just weren't effective on your symptoms.

Who knows?  I'm anxious to hear your findings, so please let me know.

Avatar universal
if you're dr won't see you , go to the er...they could do an mfi of your neck to see if there's an abscess..sure does sound like one! and if so you should be treated sooner than later.
good luck
Avatar universal
A lot of the puss drained out that morning and I made sure to get the drained puss out of my mouth and then used the APO-BENZYDAMINE mouth gargle to clean it all up. Today I noticed the swelling in the abscess area has gone down in several spots and the redness is starting to go down as well. Although in some areas there is still some puffiness. The good news is that I can swallow now with practically no pain and am able to open my mouth wide.

Since I can open my mouth wide I took a better look at my tonsils as well. They are still swollen (although much much smaller than before)which isnt much of a concern as that will take time, the thing that concerned me was that there seemed to be some white specks in a couple crater like areas. I assumed that the antibiotics/mouthwash would have taken care of stuff like that?

I'm just waiting on the results from the blood work today, so far no phone calls (if he doesnt call it means there was nothing to mention). Tomorrow I think I'll go back to the local clinic and get an appt to see if the abscess needs to be further drained.
Avatar universal
This is such an old post, I wish he had updated. I'm an 18 year old female with almost the exact same symptoms. Ibuprofen seems to help the swelling, but the doctors can't seem to figure out what is wrong. I was put on Levaquin (Levofloxacin) 750 mg for three days and 500 mg for another three. On the fourth day, my throat was fine, and on the fifth/sixth it seemed to have moved from the right to the left. My doctor said it could be a staph infection, but they only did a strep culture and blood work for mono. I'm going to be on 5 more days of Levaquin (not sure which strength yet, I'll know when I pick it up). If this doesn't clear it up I'll have to go back for "more extensive" blood work.
Avatar universal
A related discussion, peritonsillar abscess was started.
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