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Ann Otol Rhinol Laryngol. 2001 Sep;110(9):844-8.

Bacteriology of adenoids and tonsils in children with recurrent adenotonsillitis.

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Department of Pediatrics, Georgetown University School of Medicine, Washington, DC, USA.


Adenoids and tonsils electively removed from 25 children with a history of recurrent group A beta-hemolytic streptococci (GABHS) adenotonsillitis were cultured for aerobic and anaerobic bacteria. Two hundred twenty-four organisms (112 aerobes and facultatives, 110 anaerobes, and 2 Candida albicans) were isolated from the tonsils, and 229 (111 aerobes and facultatives and 118 anaerobes) were isolated from the adenoids. Mixed infection was present in all instances, with an average of 9.1 isolates per specimen. The predominant aerobes were Streptococcus sp, Haemophilus influenzae, and GABHS, and the prevalent anaerobes were Peptostreptococcus, Prevotella, and Fusobacterium spp. Beta-lactamase-producing bacteria were detected in 72 isolates recovered from 22 tonsils (88%) and in 74 isolates recovered from 21 adenoids (84%). Discrepancies in the organisms recovered were found between the tonsils and adenoids. Of the aerobic isolates, 20% were isolated only in tonsils and 18% only in adenoids. Of the anaerobes, 20% were found only in tonsils and 26% only in adenoids. This study demonstrates a polymicrobial aerobic-anaerobic flora in both adenoids and tonsils, and discrepancies in recovery of pathogens such as GABHS. The adenoids may serve as a potential source of tonsillitis caused by GABHS.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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