Adenoidectomy is a surgical procedure done to remove the adenoids, which are small patches of tissue situated right above the tonsils and that hold a similar function as they do—to fight infection in the body.
Adenoidectomy is most commonly done on pediatric patients, as they are more prone to adenoid hypertrophy (enlargement of the adenoids). In rare cases, however, the procedure may also be necessary for adults.
If your child is experiencing recurring symptoms of adenoid hypertrophy (commonly due to infection), which have not been mitigated with conservative interventions, your primary care physician will refer your child to an ENT surgeon for an adenoidectomy.
Here’s what you can expect before, during, and after an adenoidectomy.
Your ENT surgeon will give you preoperative instructions to ensure your child is prepared for the procedure. This includes having them stop taking medicines, especially over-the-counter ones, before the surgery.
Like any other type of surgery, adenoidectomy surgery does have its risks—although very rare. Your ENT doctor will thoroughly discuss these with you and will take all necessary precautions to prevent them.
Complications of adenoidectomy include:
- Breathing and nasal drainage problems
- Ear, nose, or throat infections
- Excessive bleeding
- Permanent changes in the quality of voice
- Reaction to anesthesia
Adenoidectomy is typically performed on an outpatient basis, with the procedure lasting for only 30 to 45 minutes. Your child will be sedated throughout the procedure.
Your ENT surgeon will open your child’s mouth with a retractor. They will use a transoral endoscope to guide the instrument to ensure precision and prevent damage to the nearby structures.
There are a number of instruments that can be used to remove the adenoids:
- A spoon-shaped tool (curette)
- A microdebrider
- An electrocautery device
Recovery After an Adenoidectomy
Once the anesthesia wears off and your child awakens, you may be allowed to go home. If your child is younger than three years of age or has other health issues, you may need to stay overnight. Your ENT surgeon will give you detailed post-operative instructions that you need to let your child adhere to, to ensure a successful recovery.
Recovery following an adenoidectomy often involves a few days of mild discomfort, which usually includes sore throat, runny nose, noisy breathing, and/or bad breath. These are expected to subside in a week or two. If not, make sure to reach out to your ENT surgeon.
Your child won’t need any special diet. However, since they will likely experience sore throats, it will be better for them to be on a soft diet. It also helps to have them eat cold foods, such as ice cream, fruit slushies, and yogurt, to help minimize inflammation. Have your child take their medications as directed.
Your child will need to rest for a week or two. After this, they may return to school upon your doctor’s recommendations. However, they should still avoid any strenuous activity, both at home and in school.
Adenoidectomy Expert in Georgetown, TX
At Georgetown ENT, board-certified ENT surgeon Dr. Scott Franklin has performed numerous successful adenoidectomies, helping scores of pediatric and adult patients in the Georgetown and neighboring areas in Texas feel, breathe, sleep, and live better.
To arrange a consultation with Dr. Franklin, give us a call at (512) 869-0604 or fill out our online request form,