Adenoidectomy is a procedure to remove the pharyngeal tonsils (adenoids). Before Adenoidectomy, it is essential to get a better understanding about the surgical procedure and how to prepare for it.
Things to Know Before Adenoidectomy
The adenoids are masses of lymphoid tissue located in the mouth. The key function of the adenoids is to filter germs which often pass through the mouth or the nose, along with the tonsils. Adenoids are also instrumental in producing antibodies which fight off infections.
Sometimes, while trapping the germs, the adenoids can get infected, leading to swelling and inflammation. This phenomenon is called adenoiditis and it affects children more than adults.
The adenoids are often removed due to the following reasons:
- Difficulty in breathing (through the nose)
- Chronic/Recurrent Infections
Pre Adenoid Surgery Risks and Complications
Before adenoid surgery, it is important to be aware of the various risks and complications involved. Each patient will have a different response or reaction towards the surgery and the following is a list of all the possible complications that can occur during and after the surgery:
- You might experience failure to stop snoring and clear the nasal airway, breathing from the mouth and sleep apnea.
- Very rarely, you might need a blood transfusion or certain blood products, in which case you can locate a donor in advance so that an urgent need for transfusion can be met.
- Although this is rare, adenoidectomy may cause a permanent change in your voice.
- The procedure may bring about the need for further surgical procedures (tonsil, nasal and sinus surgery).
- You need to know about allergy evaluations and environmental controls after adenoidectomy.
- A failure to cure sinus/ear infections often rises.
- Failure to relieve nasal drainage is also another common risk associated with adenoidectomy.
- Infections can crop up post adenoidectomy.
Preparing a Patient Physically Before Adenoidectomy
Most adenoidectomy surgeries do not require an overnight stay. An anesthesiologist will monitor the patient during the surgery and will review the patient’s medical history before adenoidectomy. Here are some pointers that you should keep in mind before adenoidectomy.
- Do not consume aspirin or any other medication which contains aspirin ten days before the scheduled date of the surgery.
- Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medication must not be consumed seven days before adenoidectomy. This includes medicines like Aleve, Advil, Ibuprofen and Naproxen.
- Pain relievers like Acetaminophen or Tylenol should not be used before adenoidectomy in order to prepare for the procedure.
- You should not eat or drink anything (including water and chewing gum) six hours before the scheduled time of the surgery as this may result in an anesthetic complication.
- On the day of the surgery, do not forget to carry all your documents including medical history reports and preoperative orders.
- If you wake up sick on the day of the surgery or have fever on the day before, it is vital to inform the doctor before adenoidectomy in order to avoid the complications.
Mentally Preparing a Patient Before Adenoidectomy
It is important to prepare a patient mentally before adenoidectomy by being open and up front about the procedure. Adenoid problems that can crop up after the procedure must also be specified. If the patient happens to be a child, keep reassuring him or her of a positive outcome. Ensure that they know that you will be with them and that they are safe. Most children suffer from very minute amount of pain after the surgery, so reassure them that if they experience any pain, it will be only for a short period of time.
Surgically removing the adenoids is vital to prevent further infections and sinusitis. Sometimes adenoiditis can result in temporary hearing impairment. Although it isn’t necessary for your tonsils to be removed along with your adenoids, the two surgeries are often carried out at the same time. However simple the surgical procedure may be, it is essential to mentally and physically prepare a patient before adenoidectomy so that he is fully aware of the procedure and its potential benefits.