Adenoids & its conditions

  • The adenoids are a mass of soft tissue behind the nasal cavity.
  • Like lymph nodes, adenoids are part of the immune system and are made of the same type of tissue (lymphoid tissue).
  • White blood cells circulate through the adenoids and other lymphoid tissue, reacting to foreign invaders in the body.
  • We all have adenoids at birth and in childhood, but as we head into adolescence they start to shrink.

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Adenoids Conditions

  • Adenoiditis: Inflammation of the adenoids, often from infection. Bacteria or viruses may cause adenoiditis.
  • Enlarged adenoids: In children, the adenoids can get larger because of infection or reasons that are unclear. Very large adenoids can interfere with breathing or with the flow of mucus.
  • Obstructive sleep apnea: While sleeping, enlarged adenoids may intermittently block the flow of air through the throat. This can cause a person to stop breathing for a few seconds (known as apnea) and can occur several times each night.
  • Ear infections (otitis): While sleeping, enlarged adenoids may intermittently block the flow of air through the throat. This can cause a person to stop breathing for a few seconds (known as apnea) and can occur several times each night.

Causes

Adenoiditis can be caused by a bacterial infection, such as infection with the bacteria Streptococcus. It can also be caused by a number of viruses, including Epstein-Barr virus, adenovirus, and rhinovirus.

What are the symptoms of enlarged adenoids?

What are the symptoms of enlarged adenoids?

  • blocked,stuffy nose
  • ear problems
  • problems sleeping
  • snoring
  • sore throat
  • difficulty swallowing
  • swollen glands in the neck
  • problems breathing through the nose
  • “glue ear,” or otitis media with effusion (fluid buildup in the middle ear, which can cause hearing problems)
  • cracked lips and dry mouth (from breathing problems)
  • sleep apnea (pauses in breathing during sleep)