University of Lynchburg DMSc Doctoral Project Assignment Repository

University of Lynchburg DMSc Doctoral Project Assignment Repository




Dr. Aviva G. Asnis-Alibozek, DMSc, PA-C, DFAAPA



Purpose: The purpose of this article is to review the different treatment options for adults with peritonsillar abscesses. Special interest will be dedicated to comparing the effectiveness of medical therapy alone versus a combination of surgical and medical therapy when treating peritonsillar abscesses in adults.

Data Sources: PubMed literature searches were conducted to include journal articles written in English that reported the treatment of peritonsillar abscesses in adults.

Methods: Search strategies developed for each database containing the search terms "peritonsillar abscess," "peritonsillar abscess treatment," and "peritonsillar abscess treatment in adults" yielded eighty-one articles. Data from three articles that met inclusion criteria were extracted and analyzed.

Evidence Summary: Three articles were selected and analyzed. The failure and complication rates were identified, and the comparison was made between the medical therapy only group versus a combination of surgical and medical therapy group for all three studies. The data suggest that medical therapy alone is safe and effective as the initial treatment of choice compared with a combination of surgical and medical. In most peritonsillar abscess cases, both groups' failure and complication rates are very similar.

Conclusion: There are multiple approaches to treating patients with peritonsillar abscesses, such as medical therapy with antibiotics and corticosteroids, surgical intervention with fine-needle aspiration, incision and drainage, and tonsillectomy. Medical therapy alone is a safe and effective choice as the initial treatment in patients with peritonsillar abscesses rather than a combination of surgical and medical therapy.

Keywords: Peritonsillar abscess, quinsy, treatment, medical therapy, surgical therapy.


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