Adenoids are glands found on the roof of the mouth, behind the nose. They are part of the immune system that helps guard the body, especially in young children. Adenoids trap harmful bacteria and viruses that you may breathe or swallow. They serve an essential role in young children and begin to shrink between the ages 5 and 7. Adenoids eventually dissolve and are almost entirely gone by the time a person reaches teenage years. Adults do not need adenoids, and adenoids are considered vestigial organs for them.
These organs, however, can get infected and cause harm to your child’s body. Bring your child to a doctor if he or she has is experiencing the following:
- Trouble breathing through his or her nose
- Chronic sinus infection
- Recurring middle ear infections
These issues suggest that your child’s adenoids may be infected. In such a case, your doctor may advise an adenoidectomy surgery.
What Is Adenoidectomy Surgery?
Adenoidectomy, also known as adenoid removal, is a surgery performed to remove the adenoid glands. It is necessary when the adenoids become swollen, enlarged, or infected due to infections and allergies. Children will also need the surgery if they are born with unnaturally large adenoids.
Enlarged adenoids can block a child’s airway, causing breathing problems, ear infections, snoring, or sleep apnea. Likewise, this can also prompt recurring chronic fluid in the ear, which may lead to temporary hearing loss. Since the adenoids shrink as you age, this surgery is often performed on children between ages 1 and 7.
How Is Adenoidectomy Surgery Performed?
An adenoidectomy surgery is performed by an ear, nose, and throat (ENT) surgeon. It is a relatively short procedure, typically lasting 30 to 45 minutes, and is often done in an outpatient setting. An anesthesiologist will administer general anesthesia for the surgery.
The ENT surgeon will open your child’s mouth with a retractor and remove the adenoids. Then, the surgeon may use an electrical device to stop the bleeding. There will be no cut on the skin during this procedure. Your child may feel nauseous, dehydrated, and may vomit after the surgery.
Often, your child will be allowed to go home as soon as the anesthesia wears off. However, they may be asked to stay overnight if the following issues are present after the surgery:
- Difficulty drinking
- Sleep apnea
A child younger than 3 years of age and those who have other health problems also be asked to stay overnight.
What Are the Risks of Adenoidectomy Surgery?
There are some risks common to any surgery, including adenoidectomy. Your child’s ENT surgeon will thoroughly explain these risks to you before the surgery. In most cases, the benefits of an adenoidectomy heavily outweigh the chances of the risks. Surgeons take precautions to prevent any issues during and after surgery. Some risks include:
- Excessive bleeding
- A change in vocal quality
- Failure to cure underlying breathing problems, nasal drainage, or ear infection
- Throat pain
- Breathing problems
Ear Nose and Throat Doctors in Georgetown, Texas
If your child needs an adenoidectomy or is experiencing another issue related to the ear, nose, or throat, it’s best to see an experienced ENT right here in Georgetown. Our physicians can recommend and provide the best treatment for your particular case.
Contact our medical team today to schedule an appointment by calling us at (512) 869-0604. We look forward to serving you soon!