Q. While trying to remove tonsil stones there was bleeding. What can I do?

Answered by Dr. Shyam Kalyan N and medically reviewed by iCliniq medical review team.


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Image: While trying to remove tonsil stones there was bleeding.  What can I do?

Hi doctor,

I am having an issue with one of my tonsils (or around one of my tonsils). I have dealt with tonsil stones for years, and have typically used my finger or Waterpik to remove them. Last Saturday, I discovered some tonsil stones and used my finger to remove them. Upon not getting everything, I got the Waterpik out (soft rubber tip) and simply moved it gently around what appears to be the cluster of little tonsil stones.

As I made that initial gentle move with the waterpik, I felt a little pump feeling as if the waterpik ran into a tonsil stone or something. I tried to see what was going on and continued. However, something started to bleed and continued to the point that I could not remove anything else. The next day, I went in to examine and it looked like the little cluster of tonsil stones were now visible.

However, they seemed to be attached to the skin. This worried me because now I thought that the skin had started to grow around the little stones. The area around the stones is also deep/bluish red and hurts.

I have gargled with mouthwash and salt water to help kill any germs. I have kept checking it and the "little cluster of tonsil stones" seems to act more like pus and less like tonsil stones. The rest of the tonsil feels fine as well as the other tonsil. They felt fine before the incident detailed above.

Related Questions:
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How can the formation of tonsil stones be prevented?
Are my sinus issues and tonsil stones related?

Dr. Shyam Kalyan N
Allergy Specialist, Otolaryngology (E.N.T


Welcome to icliniq.com.

I have gone through the pictures (attachment removed to protect patient identity) and read every detail you wrote. I must commend you for the detailed and chronological description of your problem. Like you predicted, it does not appear like stones. It is infected tonsils. The tonsil is studded with pus which gets formed in the tonsillar crypts. The stones also form in the same crypts due to calcium deposition.

Probably when you tried removing the stone on Saturday you accidentally introduced some germs and infectious agent to it and the subsequent day you developed tonsillitis infection. That explains the redness, congestion, and pain. Bleeding also indicates a breach of the mucosa which could have acted as a port of entry for microbes.

For now, you require a course of antibiotics, some decongestants, gargles, and painkillers. If you were to come to me, I would suggest taking Clarithromycin 500 mg tablet, one tablet twice daily after meals. Consult your specialist doctor, discuss with him or her and start taking the medicines with their consent.

You should also take a decongestant like Phenylephrine (or Ephedrine) with Levocetirizine (or Loratidine). Additionally, anti-inflammatory medicines like Trypsin-Chymotrypsin-Bromelain will accentuate healing and repair by the body. You may use Chlorhexidine or Betadine or Benzydamine gargles after each meal, but make sure you dilute the same with lukewarm water.

You may use salt water gargles also. I would like to say that gargles tend to increase acidity if you suffer from it. Plain Paracetamol (Tylenol) would suffice for pain relief. You may take the Paracetamol thrice daily. If severe pain is there, you can try Lidocam lozenges which are Lignocaine lozenges for chewing and immediate pain relief.

  • Some general precautions would be to stay away from dust, alcohol, smoke and cold winds.
  • Drink plenty of fluids and warm water every now and then.
  • Eat non-spicy non-greasy foods and take plenty of green leafy vegetables.
  • Avoid citrus fruits during an attack of throat pain as they would irritate the mucosa and worsen the pain.
  • In three days, you should start feeling better after the course of antibiotics is started. But if you do not feel better, if pain worsens, pus is more, or fever develops you would need to review and may require some blood tests.

If the tonsillar stones have been occurring repeatedly then perhaps you can think of removing the tonsils. Tonsils do not serve any function at your age. Rather, the repeated development of stones causes the release of infections from tonsils to other areas of the throat and even ears.

Tonsils mainly function to engage and remove harmful organisms from the aerodigestive tract during childhood. But over the years, it accumulates so many microorganisms that it starts acting as a source of infection.

I would advise that you explore the option of removing the tonsils surgically. Various options exist for the same and latest methods using Coblation are very safe and cause minimal bleeding and can be done as a day-care procedure. Do let us know how you feel and share the progress after starting the treatment.

For more information consult an ENT otolaryngologist online --> https://www.icliniq.com/ask-a-doctor-online/ENT-Otolaryngologist

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