Adenoidectomy, Child

Care Before and After

An adenoidectomy is the surgical removal of the adenoids. This is often done because nonsurgical treatment has failed to help your child's problems. Enlarged adenoids often cause ear problems, because the tubes that drain the middle ear enter into the upper and back area of the throat. When these tubes are blocked by adenoid tissue, the ears cannot drain properly and this can result in infection.

LET YOUR CAREGIVER KNOW ABOUT:

  • Allergies.

  • Medicines taken, including herbs, eyedrops, over-the-counter medicines, and creams.

  • Use of steroids (by mouth or creams).

  • Previous problems with anesthetics or numbing medicine.

  • Possibility of pregnancy, if this applies.

  • History of blood clots (thrombophlebitis).

  • History of bleeding or blood problems.

  • Previous surgery.

  • Other health problems.

BEFORE THE PROCEDURE

Your child should be present 60 minutes prior to his or her procedure or as directed.

AFTER THE PROCEDURE

  • Your child will be taken to the recovery area where a nurse will watch and check his or her progress.

  • Once your child is awake, stable, and taking fluids well, without other problems, he or she will be allowed to go home.

  • Throat discomfort may last for 2 to 3 weeks. There may also be pain in the ears, causing an earache. A slight fever and stuffy nose are common. Bad breath is often present. Snoring may continue for 2 to 3 weeks after surgery.

HOME CARE INSTRUCTIONS

  • Only give over-the-counter or prescription medicines for pain, discomfort, or fever as directed by your caregiver. Do not give aspirin to children. This increases the possibility for bleeding.

  • Give your child proper rest. Your child may feel worn out and tired for a while.

  • Because of the sore throat and swelling, your child's appetite may be poor. Soft and cold foods such as ice cream, frozen ice pops, and cold drinks are usually tolerated best.

  • Avoid mouthwash and gargling.

  • Avoid people with upper respiratory infections, such as colds and sore throats.

  • An ice pack applied to your child's neck may help with discomfort.

SEEK IMMEDIATE MEDICAL CARE IF:

  • There is increased bleeding, vomiting of blood, or coughing or spitting up bright red blood.

  • There is increasing pain that is not controlled with medicines.

  • Your child stops drinking fluids.

  • Your child has an oral temperature above 102° F (38.9° C), not controlled by medicine.

  • Your child develops a rash.

  • Your child has a hard time breathing.

  • Your child develops allergy problems.

  • Your child becomes lightheaded or faints.