TONSILLECTOMY AND ANDENOIDECTOMY
The tonsils are located on the outer walls in the back the of the throat. The adenoids are located in the back of the throat behind the nasal cavity. Together, tonsils and adenoids form a ring of lymphoid tissue. The crypts and crevices of the tonsils and the folds of the adenoids often harbor an accumulation of bacteria and dead cells which can cause infection and swelling. Frequent infections and difficulty breathing and swallowing can result. It is not always necessary to remove both the adenoids and tonsils at the same time, but because of their close proximity, they can both be contributing factors to the patient’s problems. If this is the case, a “T &A” (tonsillectomy and adenoidectomy) is performed.
Indications for tonsillectomy include the following: recurrent bouts of tonsillitis, tonsillar swelling causing difficulty in swallowing or breathing, obstructive sleep apnea
Indications for the adenoidectomy include the following: nasal obstruction due to the swelling of the adenoid tissue, chronic adenoidal swelling associated with problems of the middle ear (adenoiditis may act as a focus of infection leading to the inflammation of the Eustachian tube and disease of the middle ear), or the possibility of malignancy.
Tonsillectomy and adenoidectomy are common surgical procedures especially in children. The major risk of both procedures is postoperative bleeding, although this is uncommon and most patients tolerate these procedures well. Patients may experience temporary referred ear pain. They should consume a lot of fluids to help the healing process and avoid infections. Serious postoperative bleeding occurs in 1-2% of patients and may require a second visit to the operating room in order to control bleeding
There are three very important postoperative restrictions for 2 weeks:
- Soft, cold food for 2 weeks postoperatively
- No exercises or exertion for 2 weeks postoperatively
- Do not leave town, i.e.—stay within 30 minutes driving distance of the hospital where surgery was performed, or where your surgeon has surgery privileges.
HOME CARE INSTRUCTIONS FOR PATIENTS WHO HAVE HAD A TONSILLECTOMY OR TONSILLECTOMYAND ANDENOIDECTOMY (T&A)
- The patient should be encouraged to drink liquids as much as possible the same day of surgery; however, avoid citrus juices, as they will cause throat pain.
- For the first day or two at home, ginger ale, broth, popsicles, Jell-O, and soft cooked eggs are recommended for eating. Then allow the patient to progress to a soft diet at his or her own pace. Avoid foods that are hard, crumble, have small pieces, or have sharp edges. Avoid citrus juices for 2 weeks.
- For the first 14 days, drink plenty of fluids, water, ginger ale, and apple juice. Avoid citrus fruit juices, such as orange juice and grapefruit: hot fluids: rough vegetables such as raw vegetables, corn chips, peanuts, popcorn, and highly spiced foods.
- The patient should have many short rest periods during the first three days at home.
- Return to school or work approximately 10 days after discharge from the hospital.
- Avoid vigorous activity and exercise of any kind for the full 14 days following surgery.
- Do not leave town for 14 days, i.e. stay within a 30-minute driving distance of the hospital where surgery was done.
OTHER THINGS TO AVOID
- People with colds.
If bleeding occurs at any time call your doctor and/or go to the Emergency department where your surgery was performed.
If patient temperature rises to 101 degrees and does not come down with Tylenol call our office.
Chloroseptic throat spray may be used in the throat to help alleviate pain.
The patient’s stool may be dark or black for the first two days following surgery. Do not let this alarm you.
PAIN MEDICATION WILL NOT BE FILLED AFTER NORMAL CLINIC HOURS OR ON WEEKENDS.