The tonsils and adenoids are small, round collections of lymphoid tissue. Lymphoid tissue is found in all parts of the body, their primary function being to fight infection.
The removal of the tonsils and/or the adenoids will not decrease your child’s immune system. The tonsils are located in the back of the throat (known otherwise as the pharyngeal cavity) and the adenoids are located just behind the nose (in the nasopharynx).
What are the indications for tonsillectomy?
The reasons for performing tonsillectomy (tonsils removal) and/or adenoidectomy (adenoids removal) include obstructive sleep apnea (temporary short period of not breathing while sleeping) or snoring, chronic, recurrent and/or severe tonsillitis, extremely large tonsils that make swallowing and sleeping difficult and tonsillar abscesses (a collection of pus in tonsils).
How is the tonsillectomy performed?
It is the most common surgery performed worldwide. Most of the tonsillectomy surgeries are done on an outpatient basis, meaning that your child will have surgery and then go home the same day.
The surgery itself will take about 45 minutes. However, after that your child will spend about three hours in the Post-operative Recovery Room. Mostly, children can return home after this time but if your child has not recovered he/she may stay longer. Before discharge, your child will then be checked by a doctor or nurse. This is to ensure there are no signs of bleeding, he/she is well- hydrated, and the pain is under control.
The final decision to get a tonsillectomy and/or adenoidectomy will be made by you and your Ear Nose and Throat (ENT) surgeon.