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April 1989

Microbiology of the Tonsils and Adenoids

Author Affiliations

Bethesda, Md

Arch Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 1989;115(4):528. doi:10.1001/archotol.1989.01860280126033

To the Editor.—We have read with interest the article by DeDio et al1 that was recently published in the Archives. In their study, DeDio et al evaluated the microbiology of 50 tonsils and adenoids of children who had a tosillectomy or an adenoidectomy. Although they have recovered aerobic bacteria from all their patients, in frequency similar to ours,2-8 as well as other investigators,9-11 they failed to isolate any anaerobic bacteria, as we and others did. In the "Comment" section of their article, they brought out several hypotheses that attempt to explain their inability to recover anaerobic bacteria from these sites. We believe that the issues they raised deserve specific comments.

Although anaerobic bacteria colonize the oropharynx, they have been found in the core of the tonsils by all previous investigators who employed proper methodologies for the isolation of these organisms.2-11 The inability of DeDio et

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