IN THIS ARTICLE
Whether viral or bacterial, tonsillitis is transmitted most commonly from one person to another by social contact such as droplets in the air from sneezing. Most of the time, tonsillitis is caused by a viral infection. Tonsillitis caused by strep throat is uncommon in both children and adults.
Bacterial tonsillitis can be caused by Streptococcus pyogenes,the organism that causes strep throat. If left untreated, strep throat may lead to a more serious condition called rheumatic fever, which can affect the heart several years later.
Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 11/14/2014
Joseph Lauro, MD
Erik D Barton, MD, MS
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