Cass Street Ear, Nose & Throat Associates, PC
1104 Cass Street Traverse City, MI 49684 (office) 231-941-1155 (fax) 231-941-1347
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Sore Throat 

 So you have a sore throat, cough, runny nose and conjestion.  Have you caught a common cold or do you have allegy symptoms?  Sometimes, it is even difficult for doctors to distinguish between the two, because their symptoms can be so similar. If you have persistent throat discomfort accompanied by other allergy symptoms, consider allergy testing.  For more information go to our Allergy section. 


Tonsillitis is inflammation of the tonsils, two oval-shaped pads of tissue at the back of the throat.  Signs and symptoms of tonsillitis include swollen tonsils, sore throat, difficulty swallowing, and tender lymph nodes on the sides of the neck.  Most cases of tonsillitis are caused by infection with a common virus, but bacterial infections can also cause tonsillitis.  

Tonsillar/ Adenoid Hypertrophy

Tonsil hypertrophy and adenoid hypertrophy occurs when the tonsils and the adenoids become swollen and chronically enlarged.  The condition can result in nasal obstruction leading to a number of symptoms and complications. Tonsil hypertrophy and adenoid hypertrophy are medical conditions that occasionally occur in adults but most commonly affect children.

The exact cause of tonsil hypertrophy is not always clear, but the enlargement is typically related to tonsillitis or infection of the tonsils and surrounding tissue. The bacteria trapped by the tonsils can sometimes lead to infections. It is possible that irritants such as second hand smoke and air pollution can also cause the tonsils to become enlarged.

Like tonsil hypertrophy, the cause of adenoid hypertrophy is not completely clear.  Bacteria, irritation from nasal secretions or chronic allergies can cause inflammation of the adenoid tissue.  This inflammation can lead to chronic adenoid hypertrophy.

Difficulty Swallowing

Also known as dysphagia, "difficulty swallowing" is generally a sign of problems with either your espohagus or your throat.  Dysphagia is more common in babies, the elderly, and individuals with brain or nervous system disorders, but can affect others as well.


Hoarseness, an abnormal change in your voice, can be the result of a disorder in the vocal cords. Your voice may sound strained and raspy when you are hoarse.  There may also be changes in pitch and volume of your voice.


The stomach naturally produces acid to digest food.  Sometimes this acid flows back and digestive enzymes clog the esophagus.  When this occurs frequently, it is called gastro-esophageal reflux disease (GERD), which commonly causes heartburn.  

Acid can also make its way up the esophagus and into the throat, a condition called Laryngopharyngeal Reflux (LPR).  LPR often occurs without heartburn, making it difficult to diagnose, and is often considered a "silent" disease.  Symptoms include hoarseness, chronic throat clearing or cough, sore throat, a feeling of comething caught in the throat, excessive mucus, difficulty swallowing, and restless sleep.

A small amount of reflux is normal.  Abnormal amounts left untreated can lead to damage in the throat, upper airway, lungs, vocal cord nodules. It can also cause airway narrowing, granulomas and even cancer.

Click here for more information about our 
RESTECH pH TEST which measures acid levels in your airway.