Adenoidectomy is a surgical procedure performed to remove adenoids that are chronically infected or swollen. When enlarged, adenoids can affect the flow of oxygen in the upper airway, from the nose to the larynx. In adults, swollen adenoids can cause obstructive sleep apnea, which is a serious medical condition that causes pauses in breathing during sleep and loud snoring. Sleep apnea also increases your risk of chronic diseases, if left untreated. Other than sleep apnea, chronically swollen adenoids can also cause ear infections and tonsil issues.
If you have this problem, you may be wondering what to expect from an adenoidectomy. Let’s discuss what goes on during this procedure.
Adenoidectomy for Adults
An otolaryngologist or ear, nose, and throat (ENT) doctor usually performs an adenoidectomy. The surgeons use either general or local anesthesia to relax patients. The type of anesthesia used is something you should discuss with your doctor prior to the procedure.
The adenoids are located behind the nose, just above the roof of the mouth. Since they can be accessed through the mouth, the surgery is considered minimally invasive and requires no incisions to access the surgery site. The surgeon can remove the adenoids through the mouth. To keep the mouth open for the procedure, the surgeon will use a device called a retractor.
There are three techniques most commonly used in the removal of the adenoids: curettage, electrocautery, and radiofrequency energy (RFB). Curettage involves the use of a curette, which is a surgical tool with a hook-shaped end. The surgeon excises and scrapes the adenoid tissue. To stop the bleeding, the surgeon packs the area with cotton for at least five minutes. Electrocautery, on the other hand, involves the use of electricity to heat and remove the adenoid tissue; while the last technique involves the use of radiofrequency energy to heat and remove the adenoid tissue.
After surgery, you will be placed under observation for a couple of hours before you are sent home. It is normal to experience soreness in the throat and ear for a week or so after an adenoidectomy. To prevent irritation of the area, patients are instructed to eat only soft foods and drink liquids for several days following surgery. Soups, smoothies, juices, yogurt, tender cuts of meat, mashed potatoes, pasta, low-fiber cereals, and soft white bread are examples. Do not pick at the scab that forms over the operation site. Allow it to fall off naturally. Take your pain medication as instructed to ensure you remain comfortable during recovery.
Adenoidectomy in Georgetown, TX
You can trust Dr. Scott William Franklin at Georgetown ENT to treat your swollen adenoids effectively once and for all. Dr. Franklin has performed adenoidectomy numerous times, as well as other surgical procedures to solve a variety of ENT-related conditions. The entire staff at Georgetown ENT is committed to your treatment and recovery. To schedule an appointment with Dr. Franklin, call our clinic today at (512) 869-0604 or use our convenient online request form.