White Spots on Tonsils: Symptoms & Signs

Medically Reviewed on 10/28/2021

White spots can be seen on the tonsils with a variety of medical conditions, most commonly infections of the tonsils. The tonsils can be involved in bacterial infections, such as strep throat, or viral infections such as infectious mononucleosis. A white coating on the tonsils is typical of many infections. Leukoplakia causes thick white patches on the inside surface of the mouth and can be related to injury or irritation. A cancer of the tonsils is rare but could cause a nodule or spot on a tonsil. Depending on the cause, white spots on the tonsils can be associated with signs and symptoms like

Other causes of white spots on tonsils

  • Fungal Infections
  • Viral Infections


Just about any painful sore throat is caused by strep. See Answer

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Jameson, J. Larry, et al. Harrison's Principles of Internal Medicine, 20th Ed. New York: McGraw-Hill Education, 2018.