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Q. Can apnea or swollen tonsil cause sleeping problem?

Answered by
Dr. Mehak Agarwal
and medically reviewed by iCliniq medical review team.
This is a premium question & answer published on Dec 14, 2018

Hello doctor,

For a week or more I have not been able to sleep. Right before I fall asleep I wake myself up. It seems like some sort of apnoea event but I do not know if it is related to swollen tonsils or if its a bigger problem. I am going to the doctor this week but wanted an opinion online especially in relation to if my tonsils look normal or not. I am not experiencing any tonsil pain but that area does feel a little more swollen or constricted than normal.

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#

Hi,

Welcome to icliniq.com.

I have seen the video (attachment removed to protect identity). Your tonsils are enlarged. Probably because of that you have apnea. Do you have any history of any chronic illness like diabetes or hypertension, etc.? Are you on any regular medications? Also, let me know your weight and height.

Thank you doctor,

No diabetes or anything like that. My height is 178 cm and weight 94 kg. My wife had tonsillitis last week but like I said I do not have any serious symptoms and also have had apnoea episodes in the past. Last year I weighed 104 kg but then I lost some weight and they seemed to get better.

#

Hi,

Welcome back to icliniq.com.

Your weight is more for your height. So apnea can be due to obesity. Your enlarged tonsils are not related to your wife's tonsil problem. Your tonsils are enlarged which is obstructing your airway they are not infected. Your uvula is also enlarged and it is even touching your tongue which is again compromising the airway.

Thank you doctor,

So are there other solutions other than losing weight. I am going to lose weight as fast as possible but for the time being are there any solutions? Also, why would my tonsils and uvula be swollen if they are not infected? It seems to have gotten a lot worse quite quickly in the past two weeks.

#

Hi,

Welcome back to icliniq.com.

You should get sleep endoscopy done which will tell where exactly the obstruction is and if you will need surgery like tonsillectomy or palatoplasty to avoid apnea, polysomnography is another investigation which will tell you the severity of your problem. Reducing weight is a must but that will improve your symptoms gradually. CPAP is another option for treatment. But to come to any conclusions we need to get above mentioned investigations that is sleep endoscopy and polysomnography.


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