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Indications of Adenotonsillectomy for Your Child: A Parent’s Guide

20 Jul, 2022

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Overview

Adenoid glands are components of the immune system that help protect the body from viruses and bacteria. Tonsils are small, round pieces of tissue that are found on both sides of the throat in the back of the mouth. They are often removed at the same time as a part of the medical treatment plan and are known as a tonsillectomy and adenoidectomy, or T & A. And the procedure is mostly carried out on children.

Here we’ve discussed the various reasons why your children might need such a procedure so that you would know about it in brief.

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Procedure

Understanding the procedures: tonsillectomy and adenoidectomy

Adenoidectomy: An adenoidectomy, also known as adenoid removal, is a surgical procedure that removes the adenoid glands.

While adenoids help protect the body from viruses and bacteria, they can become swollen, enlarged, or infected over time. This could be caused by infections, allergies, or other factors. Some children are born with adenoids that are abnormally large.

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When a child's adenoids swell, they can partially block his or her airway, causing problems. When this occurs, children may experience breathing issues, ear infections, or other complications, which may result in snoring or more serious conditions such as sleep apnea (stopping breathing) at night.

Tonsillectomy: According to studies, when compared to a full tonsillectomy, children often recover faster and with less pain after a tonsillotomy. Both procedures relieve upper airway obstruction, but after a tonsillectomy, some children's tonsils grow back and their symptoms return.

Why does my child need to undergo an adenoidectomy and tonsillectomy?

If your child has repeated tonsil and adenoid infections caused by inflammation — known as tonsillitis and adenoiditis — that do not respond to more conservative treatments, a T&A may be recommended.

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If your child’s tonsils and adenoids are causing a functional problem, your doctor may recommend a T&A.

  • Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA)
  • Repeated infections
  • Stones in the tonsils
  • Swallowing difficulties
  • Throat or nasal passage tumor
  • Bleeding from the tonsils
  • Significant nasal passage obstruction and uncomfortable breathing

Apart from the above-mentioned conditions, if there is a persistent sore throat, including the following, your child might need to undergo T&A surgery.

  • Fever of 101°F or higher
  • Tonsillitis discharge
  • A positive culture for strep throat

Here are some additional, more contentious reasons for removing the adenoids and tonsils:

  • Snoring problem
  • Recurring throat infections or abscesses
  • Repeated ear infections
  • Loss of hearing
  • Chronic sinusitis, or sinus infection,
  • Continuous mouth breathing
  • Recurring colds
  • Cough
  • Foul odor

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How many tonsillitis episodes should my child have before tonsillectomy?

When children begin to interact with other children or begin a new school, they may be exposed to new viruses, resulting in more infections than previous. They may have seven tonsillitis infections in a year (especially in the winter), but none or only one or two the following year. This is why it is common for doctors to advise patients to postpone surgery until the following summer.

How should I look after my child following a tonsillectomy and adenoidectomy?

Our doctors will help you with taking care of your child and suggest doing the following:

  • Increased fluid consumption
  • No heavy or rough play for the duration specified by the surgeon
  • Pain medication as per the prescription

A child almost always recovers completely from an adenoidectomy r tonsillectomy, leading to a healthier life with far fewer breathing and ear problems. As he or she recovers, your child may experience a sore throat, earaches, bad breath, or a stuffy nose.



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