TONSILLECTOMY & ADENOIDECTOMY
A tonsillectomy is a procedure done to remove the tonsils.
Adenoidectomy refers to removal of the adenoids.
An adenotonsillectomy includes both of the above.
WHAT ARE TONSILS?
The tonsils are lymphoid tissue lying on either side of the back of the throat.
This tissue is similar to lymph nodes or ‘glands’ found in the neck.
They have a role in immune defence (defence against infection).
If they are recurrently or chronically infected they become a source of, rather than a defence against, infection.
WHY REMOVE TONSILS?
The adenoids are tonsil-like tissue in the back of the nose, up behind the roof of the mouth (palate).
If the adenoids are enlarged or chronically infected, they can also block the back of the nose. This will lead to nasal obstruction, mouth breathing, chronic nasal discharge, snoring and obstructive sleep apnoea.
The Eustachian tube opens near the adenoids. If adenoids are enlarged or chronically infected, this may result in recurrent ear infections
Removal is indicated to relieve nasal obstruction, snoring, sinusitis and ear infections.
They are often large in small children and are commonly also removed with the tonsils (adenotonsillectomy).
Most bleeding is brief and settles with bed-rest and sucking ice.
About 5% of patients will experience bleeding severe enough to be readmitted to hospital.
If bleeding is more than a cupful or lasts longer than 10 minutes, contact your family doctor, local A & E clinic or Hospital Emergency Department.
If you think that you or your child may required tonsillectomy and / or adenoidectomy, please call 031 201 3118 for an appointment.
A complete history will be taken, and a thorough examination completed. Further management will be in keeping with best ENT specialist practice guidelines.