Undergoing a Tonsillectomy or an Adenoidectomy Can Help Lower Risk of Infection


Infection in the tonsils and adenoids can cause various oral health issues, and patients who suffer from infection even after antibiotic treatment may benefit from our tonsillectomy and adenoidectomy treatments. Based on your specific symptoms and health concerns, our team of doctors at Chesapeake Ear Nose & Throat can recommend treatment at their practice serving the Baltimore, MD area. A tonsillectomy or adenoidectomy can help prevent infection and allow you to enjoy an overall healthier lifestyle. 

tonsils

Surgical removal of the tonsils and adenoids can provide long-term health benefits.

About the Tonsils and Adenoids

Both the tonsils and adenoids are masses of soft tissue found in the throat and nose, respectively. They fight infections entering the body through the mouth and nose. However, they can become enlarged by infection and cause visible symptoms: 

  • Difficulty breathing 
  • Diagram of TonsilsSnoring
  • Loud or labored breathing
  • Severe difficulty swallowing
  • Chronic mouth breathing
  • Sleep disturbances
  • Bad breath
  • Hyponasal speech
  • Frequent and disruptive gasping or snorting noises

If left untreated, these symptoms can lead to more serious health concerns: 

One of the most common health concerns is tonsillitis, which occurs when the tonsils and adenoids become infected while fighting germs. Although tonsillitis can be treated with antibiotics, patients with recurrent tonsillitis should explore the option of a tonsillectomy and adenoidectomy (T&A). If ear infections are the primary issue, you may only need an adenoidectomy. 

Patients suffering from obstructive adenoids and tonsillar hypertrophy who undergo these procedures report improved breathing.

Tonsillectomy vs. Adenoidectomy

Diagram of tonsils being removed.If you or your child suffer from constant infection or tonsillitis, and antibiotics do not seem to alleviate the problem, we may recommend a tonsillectomy or adenoidectomy. We will recommend a procedure based on your conditions. 

If your infection typically only resides in your ears, an adenoidectomy alone may be sufficient. During an adenoidectomy, we will use a surgical scalpel, electrocautery, or coblation to remove the adenoids. If you have frequent throat infections that do not respond to antibiotics, we will perform a tonsillectomy, which involves a similar procedure. If both your tonsils and adenoids are causing breathing or swallowing problems, we will perform both procedures. 

Prior to your procedure, we will inform you of dietary preparations and what to expect during the surgery. There are no external incisions involved and all tissue is removed through your mouth by incising the base of the tissue with a cauterizing unit. The surgery takes less than one hour, and is considered very low-risk

What Can I Expect after Tonsillectomy?

Happy boy eating a hamburger.Following surgery, it is very important to watch for infection and closely monitor your throat for rare but serious complications. The most common issue following a tonsillectomy is a very sore throat. All patients are given prescription pain medicine and an antibiotic following surgery, in liquid form. Tylenol® may be given instead of the prescription medicine, although ibuprofen and aspirin products should be avoided since these may cause bleeding. If these or other post-operative side effects do not ease over time, you should contact our office immediately. 

Positive Effects

In a study performed by the National Center for Biotechnology Information, patients suffering from obstructive adenoids and tonsillar hypertrophy who underwent these procedures reported less obstruction of their airways and improved breathing. Improved breathing can lead to better sleeping habits and improve your overall quality of life. 

Schedule a Consultation 

If you have frequent ear or throat infections, a tonsillectomy or adenoidectomy can help you reduce the risk of future illness. call our office at (410) 326-2626 or fill out our online contact form to schedule an appointment at one of our offices in Baltimore, Owings Mills, or Westminster