Pathogenesis of peritonsillar abscess

Laryngoscope. 1994 Feb;104(2):185-90. doi: 10.1288/00005537-199402000-00011.


The pathogenesis of peritonsillar abscess is described in textbooks as being a direct communication and progression of acute exudative tonsillitis. Little study has been done on the true etiology and pathogenesis of peritonsillar abscess. This paper focuses on the pathogenesis of peritonsillar abscess. A group of salivary glands (Weber's glands) proven to be located in the supratonsillar space have been shown to be implicated in the pathogenesis of peritonsillar abscess. A review of peritonsillar abscess has been undertaken, and evidence has been presented to support the premise that the true cause for peritonsillar abscess is not necessarily an extension of an acute exudative tonsillitis, but an abscess formation of Weber's salivary glands in the supratonsillar fossa.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Humans
  • Middle Aged
  • Peritonsillar Abscess / epidemiology
  • Peritonsillar Abscess / etiology*
  • Peritonsillar Abscess / therapy
  • Salivary Gland Diseases / complications*
  • Salivary Glands / pathology*
  • Salivary Glands / physiology
  • Tonsillitis / complications