Gender Ethnicracial And Life Span Considerations

Viral tonsillitis is unusual in infants and is most common in children of both genders who are 4 to 5 years of age. Bacterial infections are uncommon in children under 2 years of age and are most common in children 5 to 11 years of age. There are no known racial and ethnic considerations.


HISTORY. Usually, the symptoms of viral tonsillitis have a gradual onset. Elicit a description of the history and progression of the signs and symptoms. Expect that the predominant symptom is rhinorrhea (a runny nose), which is the key symptom. Ask parents if the child also demonstrates other common symptoms: sore throat, dysphagia, mild cough, hoarseness, and a low-grade fever. Ask if any members of the household have had a cold or upper respiratory infection. Bacterial infections have an abrupt onset without rhinorrhea. Generally, parents will describe fever, weakness, sore throat, dysphagia, nausea, abdominal discomfort, and vomiting.

PHYSICAL EXAMINATION. Children with viral and bacterial infections will have symptoms that reflect the infecting organism (Table 3).

• TABLE S Symptoms of Tonsillitis Based on Causative Agent
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