Enlarged adenoids

Alternative Names

Adenoids – enlarged

Definition of Enlarged adenoids

Enlarged adenoids refers to swollen lymphatic tissue that is found in the airway between your nose and the back of your throat. The tissue is similar to the tonsils.

Causes, incidence, and risk factors

Enlargement of the adenoids may occur naturally (beginning when the baby grows in the womb), or it may be caused by long-term inflammation. The adenoids normally shrink as children reach adolescence.

Signs and tests

The adenoids cannot be seen by looking in the mouth directly, but can be seen with a special mirror or using a flexible endoscope through the nose.

Treatment

Antibiotics may be used to treat tonsil, adenoid, and sinus infections when they occur.

Expectations (prognosis)

Full recovery is expected.

Review

Neil K. Kaneshiro, MD, MHA, Clinical Assistant Professor of Pediatrics, University of Washington School of Medicine. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc. – 12/1/2008

Throat anatomy
Adenoids

ADAM Medical Encyclopedia

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