A tonsillectomy is a surgical procedure to remove the tonsils. Tonsils are two small glands located in the back of your throat. Tonsillitis is an infection of the tonsils that can make your tonsils swell and give you a sore throat. Frequent episodes of tonsillitis might be a reason you need to have a tonsillectomy. Other symptoms of tonsillitis include fever, trouble swallowing, and swollen glands around your neck. Your doctor may notice that your throat is red and your tonsils are covered in a whitish or yellow coating.
The tonsils are often removed along with the adenoid glands. That surgery is called adenoidectomy and is most often done in children.
Tonsil Surgery In Depth
The surgery is done while the child is under general anesthesia. Your child will be asleep and pain-free. A tonsillectomy can also be a treatment for breathing problems, like heavy snoring and sleep apnea.
The tonsils help protect against infections. But children with large tonsils may have problems breathing at night. The tonsils may also trap excess bacteria which can lead to frequent or very painful sore throats. In either of these cases, the child’s tonsils have become more harmful than protective.
Tonsillitis and the need for tonsillectomies are more common in children than adults. However, people of any age can experience trouble with their tonsils and require surgery. One case of tonsillitis is not enough to warrant a tonsillectomy. Usually, the surgery is a treatment option for those who are often sick with tonsillitis or strep throat.
Tonsillitis and the need for tonsillectomies are more common in children than adults. However, people of any age can experience trouble with their tonsils and require surgery.
One case of tonsillitis is not enough to warrant a tonsillectomy. Usually, the surgery is a treatment option for those who are often sick with tonsillitis or strep throat. If you’ve had at least seven cases of tonsillitis or strep in the last year (or five cases or more over each of the last two years), talk to your doctor about whether a tonsillectomy is an option for you.
Tonsillectomy can also treat other medical problems, including:
- breathing problems related to swollen tonsils
- frequent and loud snoring
- periods in which you stop breathing during sleep, or sleep apnea
- bleeding of the tonsils
- trouble swallowing chewy foods, especially meats
- cancer of the tonsils
There are several different ways to remove tonsils. The most common method is called “cold knife (steel) dissection.” In this case, Dr. Tadros will remove your tonsils with a scalpel.
Another common method for tonsillectomy involves burning away the tissues through a process called cauterization. Ultrasonic vibration (using sound waves) is also used in some tonsillectomy procedures. Tonsillectomies usually take about a half hour.
No matter what surgical method your doctor chooses, you’ll be asleep with a general anesthetic. You won’t be aware of the surgery or feel any pain. When you wake up after the tonsillectomy, you’ll be in a recovery room. Medical staff will monitor your blood pressure and heart rate as you wake up. Most people can go home the same day after a successful tonsillectomy.
Patients can experience some pain as they recover from a tonsillectomy. You might have a sore throat after surgery. You might also feel pain in your jaw, ears, or neck. Get plenty of rest, especially in the first two to three days after surgery.
Sip water or eat ice pops to stay hydrated without hurting your throat. Warm, clear broth and applesauce are ideal food choices during early recovery. You can add ice cream, pudding, oatmeal, and other soft foods after a couple days. Try not to eat anything hard, crunchy, or spicy for several days after a tonsillectomy.
Pain medication can help you feel better during recovery. Take the medicines exactly as Dr. Tadros prescribes.
The patient’s surgery will be performed safely and with care in order to obtain the best possible results.