7 Drugs And Medications To Treat Tonsillitis


Inflammation of the tonsils is called tonsillitis. It is usually caused by viral infections and occasionally by bacterial infections. The Streptococcus pyogenes is the most common bacterial strain associated with tonsillitis. Tonsillitis caused by the Streptococcus bacteria is also known as strep throat.

Viral infections heal naturally without medical interventions. However, medicines may be needed to alleviate pain and fever frequently associated with viral infections of the tonsil. Your doctor may prescribe an antibiotic only when a bacterial infection is associated with tonsillitis.

While taking antibiotics, remember to complete the full course of the drug as instructed by your physician.Inappropriate antibiotic use worsens the infection and increases the risk of it spreading to other areas of the body.Chronic tonsillitis that does not respond to conventional treatment may require surgical removal of the tonsils.

Best Medications To Treat Tonsillitis

Acetaminophen (paracetamol)

Acetaminophen or paracetamol drugs cannot treat tonsillitis. They only provide relief from fever and pain caused by tonsillitis. Acetaminophen is considered safe for children.These drugs are usually available without prescription. Acetaminophen rarely causes adverse side effects when used appropriately. Rarely does it cause allergic reactions.


Ibuprofen is taken to reduce inflammation and pain. However, it cannot cure tonsillitis. The exact dosage and duration of treatment with ibuprofen depends upon the severity of the condition. It is usually used not more than four times a day for alleviating the symptoms of tonsillitis. Ibuprofen may cause stomach upset if taken without food. Other possible side effects of the drug include dizziness, ringing in the ear and bloating.


Aspirin may provide relief from pain and inflammation caused by tonsillitis. However, it cannot cure the infection.Aspirin is usually not recommended for children and teenagers. Non-prescription aspirin can be taken four times a day to reduce the discomfort. Aspirin may cause allergic reactions, stomach pain, nausea and heartburn.


When a bacterial infection causes tonsillitis, your doctor may prescribe penicillin for treating the infection. In most cases, penicillin V is taken for ten days to treat the infection. Usually 125 to 500 mg of the antibiotic drug is taken three to four times a day. Penicillin may cause side effects such as diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, itching, skin rash and abdominal pain. People with a history of penicillin allergy are prescribed non-penicillin antibiotics for treating tonsillitis caused by a bacterial infection.


People allergic to penicillin may use cephalosporin antibiotics for treating bacterial infections. The new generation cephalosporin antibiotics can effectively treat infections caused by bacterial strains resistant to conventional antibiotics.Some of the cephalosporin drugs prescribed by doctors for treating tonsillitis include cefuroxime, cefprozil, cefizime, cefixime, cefaclor and cefdinir. Common side effects of these drugs include diarrhea, nausea, vomiting and stomach cramps.


Erythromycin is a popular macrolide antibiotic used for treating tonsillitis caused by bacterial infection. A 5-day course of the antibiotic is usually recommended for treating the infection. Erythromycin is usually taken on empty stomach. However, certain brands can be taken with food. Diarrhea, stomach cramp, stomach pain, vomiting and skin rash are possible side effects of the drug.


A 5-day course of the macrolide antibiotic azithromycin can effectively treat tonsillitis caused by a bacterial infection.It can be taken with or without food. Diarrhea, stomach pain, vomiting and skin rash are common side effects of the drug.

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