The tonsils are lymphoid (immune) tissue located in the throat and at the back of the nose.
What to expect with the procedure
Removal of the tonsils is done under general anaesthesia in hospital.
After inserting a mouth-gag, the tongue is retracted to visualize the tonsils. The tonsils are removed using an instrument that seals the blood vessels and then cuts the tissue. Bleeding is controlled using diathermy or ties. The procedure usually takes 30 minutes.
After a short period in recovery, you will be observed for 24 hours in the hospital. This is to monitor for any bleeding and to allow pain to be adequately managed. Following breakfast and review by myself in the morning, you will be discharged home and supplied with appropriate analgesia.
A tonsillectomy is a painful procedure, particularly in adults. Pain can last between 10-14 days, with a slight increase in the pain between day 5-7. It is very important to be on top of your pain relief. I recommend regular Panadol for the first 5-7 days, irrespective of the level of pain. Pain relief should be taken usually 30 minutes before eating. Stronger pain relief is prescribed if required and used for breakthrough pain. Maintaining a normal diet after surgery is really important in improving recovery and reducing the chance of an infection or post-operative bleed. If you cough up more than a tablespoon of fresh blood, please proceed to the nearest public hospital for prompt review. (Post-operative instructions)
If you are taking the stronger opiate medication for pain relief, I would recommend purchasing Coloxyl and Senna and/or Metamucil from your pharmacy to reduce the chance of constipation.
I will usually review you 6 weeks after the procedure.