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name commonly referring to the palatine tonsils, two ovoid masses of lymphoid tissue situated on either side of the throat at the back of the tongue. The pharyngeal tonsils, or adenoidsadenoids
, common name for the pharyngeal tonsils, spongy masses of lymphoid tissue that occupy the nasopharynx, the space between the back of the nose and the throat. Normally the adenoids, like the palatine tonsils located on either side of the throat, help prevent infection
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, are masses of similar tissue located in the nasopharynx, and the lingual tonsils are rounded masses of tissue on the back of the tongue. The tonsils act as a filter against disease organisms. However, they often become a site of infection, a condition known as tonsillitis, and sometimes become enlarged. This condition is more prevalent during childhood, since tonsil tissue tends to regress with age. Tonsillectomy, the removal of the tonsils, is sometimes advised if frequent inflammation poses a threat to health. Tonsilloliths, or tonsil stones, sometimes form in the tonsils when dead cells and other debris that has accumulated calcifies; most common in persons with chronic tonsillitis, tonsil stones can cause difficulty in swallowing, halitosis (bad breath), and ear pain. Troublesome stones can be extracted; the only certain means of preventing recurrence is tonsillectomy. See respirationrespiration,
process by which an organism exchanges gases with its environment. The term now refers to the overall process by which oxygen is abstracted from air and is transported to the cells for the oxidation of organic molecules while carbon dioxide (CO2
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The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia™ Copyright © 2013, Columbia University Press. Licensed from Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



masses of lymphadenoid tissue in the mucous membrane in the vicinity of the pharynx. Distinction is made between the lingual tonsils (on the dorsal surface of the tongue), the pharyngeal tonsils (in the vault of the pharynx), the tubal tonsils (near the opening of the auditory, or eustachian, tubes), and the palatine tonsils (between the palatoglossal and palatopharyngeal arches). Lymphocytes are produced in the tonsils, and from there they are partially discharged into the lymph stream. The tonsils play an important role in protecting the body against pathogenic microorganisms and in creating immunity.

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
Thirty percent of the children had large tonsils. And, of that group, 30% had symptoms strongly suggestive of obstructive sleep apnea, based upon parental report, a prevalence five times greater than in children without large tonsils.
He says: 'Tonsils play an important role in helping to combat infections, and we have changed things over the years so that we don't remove tonsils as often as we used to.
During their examinations of the patients, the scientists found no other mouth problems, but when they squeezed and massaged the patients' tonsils there was a foul-smelling discharge, suggesting the problem was fetid tonsils.
Too often we removed tonsils in the past, thinking the child (or adult) would never get another sore throat infection.
In this report we present the case of a 72-year-old HIV (-) woman who presented with a fast-growing swelling on the right tonsil and was diagnosed with KS following diagnostic tonsillectomy.
Tom Marshall, Professor or Public Health and Primary Care at the University of Birmingham, said: "Our research showed that most children who had their tonsils removed weren't severely enough affected to justify treatment, while on the other hand, most children who were severely enough affected with frequent sore throats did not have their tonsils removed.
The removal of the tonsils or adenoids in the throat also increased the chances of allergic conditions and infectious upper respiratory tract diseases - including asthma, cold, influenza, and pneumonia, among others - in the following years.
To obtain core culture of the tonsils in patients presenting with recurrent/ chronic tonsillitis.
'We calculated disease risks depending on whether adenoids, tonsils or both were removed in the first 9 years of life because this is when these tissues are most active in the developing immune system,' said one of the study authors, Sean Byars from University of Melbourne in Australia.
The paper in the ( Journal of the American Medical Association - Otolaryngology reported that people who seem otherwise healthy might have human papillomavirus, more well known by its acronym HPV, submerged in the slimy biofilms filling the "crypts" of their tonsils. That could put them at risk for developing cancer in their mouths or throats later on.
[U.S.A], Feb.1 ( ANI ): It has come to light that cancer causing virus may hide in small pockets on the surface of tonsils in throats of unsuspected people.
Inclusion criteria were the presence of sleep apnea, tonsillar hypertrophy grade [greater than or equal to] 3 (both palatine tonsils (PT) occupied 50% or more of the oropharynx width), and the adenoid (AD) occupied 70% or more of the nasopharynx at endoscopy.