Tonsil and Adenoid Removal.
Tonsil and Adenoid Removal usually occurs as a result of many episodes of tonsillitis, strep throat, breathing, or swallowing problems.
Tonsillectomies used to be a fairly common surgery for children. Since the function of tonsils is to fight infections caused by bacteria and viruses that contaminate through the mouth, tonsils themselves are prone to become inflamed and infected.
A tonsillectomy is the surgery to remove tonsils, the small glands on each side of the throat. It is usually required because of chronic tonsillitis, strep throat, breathing problems, and other issues caused by enlarged, infected, or swollen tonsils.
If the incidence of tonsillitis is more than seven times in a year, a tonsillectomy should be considered. Other factors in considering this surgery include bacterial infections of the tonsils that do not respond to antibiotics, or an abscessed tonsil situation.
Swollen or enlarged tonsils are also a cause for tonsillectomy, particularly if they cause difficulty with breathing, sleeping, or swallowing.
More rare conditions, such as cancer or bleeding issues may also require tonsil removal.
Tonsil removal is often accompanied by adenoid (the gland at the top of the throat and behind the nose). An adenoidectomy is suggested when an adult or child has frequent breathing, sinus, or ear problems that do not respond to antibiotics.
The surgery, done under general anesthesia, is done through the mouth, so there is no need for an incision. The surgery usually takes less than an hour and you can expect to have a sore throat and possibly sore jaws for several days. Liquids and cool, soft food (popsicles, ice cream) are recommended during recovery time.
Your healthcare team will discuss pre-surgery and post-surgery details with you, so you know what to expect. For adults, this is often a day-surgery procedure. Children are more likely to be kept overnight for observation before going home to recover.
During home recovery after the surgery, you should call your doctor immediately if your child has a fever higher than 100 degrees F, nausea, trouble breathing, or rashes.