Throat Swelling

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Reviewed By:

Rohini R

Rohini R, MD (Ear, nose, throat (ENT))

Yoshinori Abe

Yoshinori Abe, MD (Internal medicine)

From our team of 50+ doctors

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People with these symptoms also use Ubie's symptom checker to find possible causes

  • I have pharyngeal edema

  • Swelling of the tonsils

  • Swelling of the throat is worse on one side

  • My uvula leaning to one side or the other

  • Tonsils are stretched

  • Asymmetric deviation of the uvula

  • Unilateral tonsillar swelling

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Content updated on Jan 4, 2023

About the symptom

Throat swelling is referring to the swelling in the back of the throat between the tonsils and the voice box. It can be uncomfortable, causing a sore throat or tightness.

When to see a doctor

Seek professional care if you experience any of the following symptoms

  • Throat swelling

Possible causes

  • Acute tonsillitis / pharyngitis

    Infection of the tonsils and pharynx (back of the mouth), either by viruses or bacteria.

  • Suppurative lymphadenitis

  • Retropharyngeal abscess

    A retropharyngeal abscess is uncommon but potentially life-threatening. It is an infection that forms behind the back wall of the throat.

  • Immunodeficiency syndrome

Related serious diseases

  • Acute HIV infection

    Acute HIV infection occurs in some individuals during the first 4 weeks after contracting the HIV virus. The virus rapidly attacks the immune cells and causes fevers, headaches, and sometimes a rash. The patient is highly contagious during this time as the viral load is high. Risk factors for transmitting HIV include unprotected sexual activity and contaminated needle stick injuries(e.g., via tattoos or sharing needles). Rarely, it is transmitted through the transfusion of blood products.

  • Angioedema

Questions your doctor may ask about this symptom

Your doctor may ask these questions to check for this symptom

  • Do you have throat swelling?

  • Do you have a fever?

  • Do you have a cough?

  • Do you have a runny nose?

  • Do you have phlegm?

Other Related Symptoms

Similar symptoms or complaints

Reviewed By:

Rohini R

Rohini R, MD (Ear, nose, throat (ENT))

Yoshinori Abe

Yoshinori Abe, MD (Internal medicine)

From our team of 50+ doctors

Just 3 minutes.
Developed by doctors.

Ubie is supervised by 50+ medical experts worldwide

Shohei Harase

Shohei Harase, MD


Kameda Medical Center, Japan

Yu Shirai

Yu Shirai, MD


Yotsuya Yui Clinic, Japan

Yoshinori Abe

Yoshinori Abe, MD

Internal medicine

Co-founder of Ubie, Inc.

Rohini R

Rohini R, MD

Ear, nose, throat (ENT)

Bayshore Health Centre, India

Seiji Kanazawa

Seiji Kanazawa, MD, PHD

Obstetrics and gynecology (OBGYN)

National Center for Child Health and Development, Japan

View our medical experts