John Mersch, MD, FAAP
Dr. Mersch received his Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of California, San Diego, and prior to entering the University Of Southern California School Of Medicine, was a graduate student (attaining PhD candidate status) in Experimental Pathology at USC. He attended internship and residency at Children's Hospital Los Angeles.
William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR
Dr. Shiel received a Bachelor of Science degree with honors from the University of Notre Dame. There he was involved in research in radiation biology and received the Huisking Scholarship. After graduating from St. Louis University School of Medicine, he completed his Internal Medicine residency and Rheumatology fellowship at the University of California, Irvine. He is board-certified in Internal Medicine and Rheumatology.
In this Article
- Tonsillectomy and adenoidectomy introduction
- What are the risks and complications of tonsillectomy and adenoidectomy?
- What happens before surgery?
- What takes place the day of surgery?
- What happens during surgery?
- What happens after surgery?
- General instructions and follow-up care
- When to call the doctor
- Tonsillectomy and Adenoidectomy At A Glance
- Find a local Ear, Nose, & Throat Doctor in your town
What takes place the day of surgery?
It is important that the patient (or caregiver) knows precisely what time they are to check in with the surgical facility, and that they allow sufficient preparation time. Bring all papers, forms, and insurance information including the preoperative orders and history sheets. The patient should wear comfortable loose fitting clothes, (pajamas are OK). Leave all jewelry and valuables at home. Children may bring a favorite toy, stuffed animal, or blanket.
The patient should not take any medication unless instructed by the doctor or anesthesiologist. Usually in the pre-operative holding room, a nurse will start an intravenous infusion line (IV) and the patient may be given a medication to help them relax.
What happens during surgery?
In the operating room, the anesthesiologist will usually use a mixture of gas and an intravenous medication for the general anesthetic. In most situations, an IV will have been started either in the preoperative holding room or after the patient has been given a mask anesthetic. During the procedure, the patient will be continuously monitored by a pulse oximeter (measuring oxygen saturation) and a continuous heart rate monitor. The surgical team is well trained and prepared for any emergency. In addition to the surgeon and anesthesiologist, there will be a nurse and a surgical technician in the room.
After the anesthetic takes effect, the doctor will remove the tonsils and/or adenoids through the mouth. There will be no external incisions. The base of the tonsils and/or adenoids will be burned (cauterized) with an electrical cauterizing unit. The whole procedure usually takes less than 60 minutes. The doctor will come to the waiting room to talk with any family or friends once the patient is safely transferred to the recovery room.
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