The Symptoms of Quinsy, or Tonsillitis

Chilliness; marked fever; redness and swelling of the tonsils and soft palate; pain and some difficulty in swallowing; entrance of liquids into the nasal cavity on attempting to swallow; pain behind the angle of the lower jaw and in front of the ear in advanced stage of suppuration.

Tonsillitis, or inflammation of the tonsils, is usually accompanied with acute inflammation of the pharynx or soft palate, and hence is accompanied with nearly all the symptoms mentioned as characteristic of the latter affection. On account of the more extensive swelling of the tonsils, there is much greater pain than accompanies pharyngeal catarrh, and the ear is much more liable to be affected by the extension of the disease through the Eustachian tubes. There is usually headache and a very full pulse. The chilliness and febrile action frequently precedes the swelling of the tonsils several hours or even a day. The tongue is heavily coated, the patient has very little appetite, and if disposed to eat would be nearly unable on account of the pain in swallowing. Unless speedily arrested in its early stages, the disease goes on to suppuration, and, if the discharge is not hastened by lancing, usually breaks and discharges in the mouth while the patient is asleep or during a fit of coughing. The pus of the discharge is usually swallowed when the discharge occurs during sleep, and the patient awakes from his troubled sleep very greatly relieved. The causes of the disease are the same as those which provoke acute pharyngitis.