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Tonsillectomy is a surgical procedure in which both palatine tonsils are fully removed from the back of the throat. Visit Pristyn Care and undergo a safe and effective tonsillectomy surgery in India. We work with expert and experienced ENT surgeons who have years of experience in performing various surgeries, including tonsillectomy. Book an appointment with us now.
Tonsillectomy is a surgical procedure in which both palatine tonsils are fully removed from the back of the throat. Visit Pristyn Care and undergo ...a safe and effective tonsillectomy surgery in India. We work with expert and experienced ENT surgeons who have years of experience in performing various surgeries, including tonsillectomy. Book an appointment with us now.Read More
Tonsillectomy is the surgical procedure to remove tonsils. Tonsils are two fleshy, oval-shaped pads of tissue at the back of the throat. Tonsillectomy surgery is the most effective and long-lasting treatment for sore throat. It drastically improves the quality of life for people suffering from chronic tonsillitis.
It also helps in treating breathing and other problems related to enlarged tonsils and rare diseases of the tonsils. The recovery time for a tonsillectomy is usually at least 10 days to 2 weeks. However, the recovery period can vary from person to person, depending on their overall health condition.
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When is a Tonsils Operation (Tonsillectomy) required?
Tonsillectomy is required to treat the following conditions:
Recurring, chronic, or severe infection of the tonsils
Breathing problems due to swollen/enlarged tonsils
Frequent and loud snoring due to airway obstruction
Sleep apnea, i.e., a sleep disorder characterized by interrupted or shallow breathing during sleep due to swollen tonsils
Recurrent bleeding of the tonsils or blood vessels surrounding the tonsils
Severe halitosis (bad breath) due to tonsillar debris
Tonsillar abscess, i.e., collection of pus behind the tonsils
Tonsillectomy is also considered if the symptoms related to tonsillitis, such as pain and difficulty in swallowing, breathing difficulties, sleep apnea, swelling in the neck glands, etc., severely impact your life.
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Types of Tonsils Removal Surgery (Tonsillectomy)
Different types of tonsillectomy surgery are as follows:
It is a laser procedure in which the tonsils are removed using a focused, high-energy radiofrequency beam. It is also known as radiofrequency tonsil ablation.
Harmonic scalpel tonsillectomy
In this surgery, a harmonic scalpel cuts the inflamed tonsils through vibration energy. It generates heat and friction, leading to protein denaturation and dissection of the tonsils.
Electrocautery or cauterization tonsillectomy
In this procedure, the surgeon uses low-energy electrocautery to remove the inflamed tonsils. It is one of the oldest or most conventional methods for tonsil removal.
Cold knife dissection tonsillectomy
A cold knife dissection is traditional open surgery for tonsil removal. The surgeon uses a cold or sharp knife to cut the tonsils and their capsules from the surrounding tissues.
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Diagnosis Before Tonsillectomy Surgery
Prior to the surgery, a comprehensive diagnostic evaluation is necessary to determine the severity of the condition and ensure that tonsillectomy is the appropriate treatment. The ENT doctor will perform the following diagnostic tests:
Physical examination: The doctor will inspect the throat for any abnormalities, such as growths or rashes, and check the neck lymph nodes for signs of infection. They may also assess breath sounds to evaluate potential lung involvement.
Throat swab: A sample of throat discharge will be collected using a sterilized swab for laboratory culture. This helps identify the specific pathogen causing the infection and guides appropriate medication selection. Additional samples may be taken from the nose and larynx if there are associated infections like sinusitis or pulmonary infection.
In some cases, additional diagnostic tests such as a complete blood count (CBC), X-ray, or CT scan may be required for more severe presentations.
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What happens during Tonsils Removal Procedure?
Tonsillectomy surgery is typically performed under general anesthesia to ensure a pain-free experience for the patient. Once the diagnosis is established, the surgeon and patient collaborate to determine the most suitable treatment approach. Coblation and cauterization tonsillectomy are commonly regarded as the most effective techniques to remove tonsils.
During electrocautery or cauterization tonsillectomy, the surgeon employs low-energy electrocautery to remove the inflamed tonsils. Coblation tonsillectomy, on the other hand, utilizes low-temperature radiofrequency and a saline solution to gently and precisely extract the tonsils. Both methods minimize damage to surrounding tissues, leading to a faster recovery.
The tonsillectomy procedure generally lasts around 20-30 minutes, after which the patient is transferred to a recovery ward. In most cases, patients are discharged within 24 hours, even if they undergo overnight observation in the hospital.
Benefits of Tonsil surgery for Tonsillitis
Some common benefits of tonsil surgery are as follows:
Enhanced quality of life: Tonsillitis can cause significant pain and hinder everyday activities such as speaking, eating, and breathing. By undergoing a tonsillectomy, individuals can alleviate these problems and experience an improved overall quality of life.
Reduced infections: Tonsil infections can give rise to additional health issues like adenoiditis, sinusitis, sore throat, and pulmonary infections. Removing the tonsils effectively helps prevent future occurrences of these infections, leading to a decrease in associated health problems.
Decreased medication usage: With a reduction in infections, there is a corresponding decrease in the need for prescription medications like antibiotics. This helps prevent the body from developing a tolerance to these medicines and maintains a balanced immune response.
Improved sleep: Enlarged tonsils can cause breathing difficulties and obstruct the throat, often resulting in sleep apnea. This disrupts the sleep cycle, leading to fatigue and mood swings. A tonsillectomy can prevent or treat sleep apnea, enabling better quality sleep.
Minimized time off work or school: Severe tonsil infections frequently require individuals to miss work or school, resulting in increased absences and reduced productivity. Successful tonsillectomy procedures mean fewer days off work or school, leading to improved attendance and higher productivity levels.
Preparation before Tonsils surgery
Before undergoing a surgical procedure, it is essential for the physician to assess the individual’s medical history and current medications. This evaluation provides a comprehensive understanding of the patient’s overall health status.
Listed below are some preparation tips to follow before tonsils surgery:
Your doctor may advise you to discontinue certain medications before surgery as it can increase the risk of bleeding. So it may be necessary to discontinue them for a specific period before the procedure.
Blood tests may be conducted to identify any bleeding tendencies or medical conditions that could affect the safety of the surgery.
It is important to inform the physician about any allergies to local anesthetics, such as lidocaine.
To prevent potential complications, it is advised to avoid applying cosmetics, deodorant, or topical medicines on the area being treated prior to the procedure.
Quitting smoking and refraining from using nicotine-based products for a while before surgery as they can impair healing and increase the risk of complications.
Alcohol consumption should also be avoided for a specified period, as instructed by the healthcare provider.
Fasting, typically for a minimum of 8 hours, is necessary before the surgical procedure to reduce the risk of aspiration.
If you are diabetic, maintaining blood sugar within the normal range is crucial. If needed, a diabetologist may suggest insulin or oral medication to ensure optimal blood sugar control during the pre-operative period.
Recovery After Tonsillectomy
After a tonsillectomy, it usually takes around 2-3 weeks to fully recover. To facilitate your recovery, here are some simple tips to follow:
Rest adequately and avoid straining your throat or voice. Steer clear of strenuous activities that could strain the surgical site, as this can lead to swelling and delay healing.
Stay well-hydrated by drinking plenty of fluids. This helps prevent dehydration and reduces swelling in the surgical area.
Avoid fried, spicy, and crispy foods, as they can irritate the surgical wound and potentially cause complications during the healing process.
Opt for soft and nutritious foods like ice creams, yogurt, broth, mashed potatoes, scrambled eggs, and pudding. These foods are gentle on your throat and provide essential nutrients.
Take your prescribed medications, particularly painkillers and antibiotics, as directed by your healthcare provider. This will help manage pain and prevent infections.
Use an ice pack to gently massage the surgical area several times daily for the first 2-3 days following the procedure. This can help alleviate swelling and provide relief.
It’s advisable to wait at least two weeks before undertaking a long journey. However, if it’s unavoidable, consult your surgeon and obtain their approval and guidance.
Schedule a follow-up consultation with your ear, nose, and throat (ENT) surgeon to ensure there are no postoperative complications and to monitor your progress.
Please note that these tips are general recommendations, and it’s crucial to follow the specific instructions provided by your surgeon or healthcare team for your individual recovery.
Risk & Complications Associated With Tonsillectomy
Tonsillectomy, like any surgical procedure, carries certain risks:
Anesthetic reactions: The anesthesia used during surgery can sometimes cause temporary, minor issues such as headaches, nausea, vomiting, or muscle soreness. While serious, long-term complications are rare, it’s important to note that general anesthesia carries a small risk of death.
Swelling: Swelling of the tongue and soft palate (the roof of the mouth) after the procedure can potentially cause breathing difficulties, particularly in the initial hours following surgery.
Bleeding during surgery: Although rare, there is a possibility of significant bleeding occurring during the surgical procedure, which may necessitate additional treatment and an extended hospital stay.
Bleeding during healing: During the healing process, there is a risk of bleeding, especially if the scab that forms at the surgical site is dislodged prematurely.
Infection: Infection following surgery is a rare complication, but it can happen and may require further treatment.
It’s important to remember that these risks are generally low, and healthcare professionals take precautions to minimize them.
Lifestyle Changes After Tonsils Removal Surgery
Following a tonsillectomy, the ENT surgeon typically provides post-operative instructions that are important to adhere to for a smooth and prompt recovery. Immediately after the surgery, scabs may form in the area where the tonsils were removed. These scabs typically remain in place for approximately 5 to 10 days before naturally falling off. However, if they detach prematurely, it can lead to bright red bleeding, necessitating medical attention.
The recovery period after a tonsillectomy generally spans around 2-3 weeks, but this duration can vary depending on the patient’s overall health. Once you consult with the doctor, you can return to work within two weeks after the procedure. To alleviate discomfort and expedite recovery during this time, the following lifestyle changes can be helpful.
Rest and recuperation: Take sufficient time to rest and give your body the opportunity to heal. You must avoid engaging in strenuous physical activities and follow all the instructions as advised by your surgeon.
Pain management: There is a chance of throat pain and discomfort post-surgery. Follow your doctor’s guidance on pain management, which may involve over-the-counter pain relievers or prescribed medication. Take pain medications as directed, and be mindful not to strain your throat during the recovery process.
Adequate hydration: Stay hydrated by consuming plenty of fluids. Water is the best choice, but you can also opt for non-acidic and non-irritating liquids such as herbal teas, clear broths, and diluted fruit juices. Avoid extremely hot or cold fluids that may cause discomfort.
Soft and cool diet: Initially, stick to a diet consisting of soft and cool foods. Opt for items like smoothies, yogurt, mashed potatoes, gelatin, and soft fruits, which are gentle on the healing throat. Steer clear of spicy, acidic, and rough-textured foods that may irritate the surgical site.
Gradual reintroduction of solid foods: As you progress in your recovery, gradually reintroduce solid foods into your diet. Start with easily chewable, soft foods and gradually transition to a regular diet as your tolerance improves. It is important to avoid hard, crunchy, or spicy foods that can irritate the healing area.
Oral hygiene: Maintain good oral hygiene to prevent infection. Use a soft-bristled toothbrush to gently brush your teeth and follow your surgeon’s recommendations regarding rinsing your mouth with a saltwater solution. Avoid mouthwashes containing alcohol, as they can cause irritation.
Avoid strenuous activities: Refrain from participating in vigorous physical activities such as heavy lifting or intense exercise during the initial recovery phase. These activities can strain the throat and increase the risk of bleeding.
Follow-up appointments: Attend all scheduled follow-up appointments with your surgeon to monitor your healing progress and address any concerns or complications that may arise.
Minimize exposure to illness: Take precautions to minimize exposure to individuals with contagious illnesses, such as colds or the flu, as your immune system may still be weakened during the recovery period.
Remember, it is important to adhere to your surgeon’s specific instructions and recommendations to ensure a smooth and successful recovery following tonsil removal surgery.
Tonsillectomy Cost in India
The overall cost of tonsillectomy surgery in India ranges from INR. 40,000 to INR. 60,000. However, the cost is variable and depends on a variety of factors, including:
Choice of treatment city and hospital
Type of the surgery
Patient’s age and health condition
Post-surgical care and complications
Cost of diagnostic tests
Additional treatments required
Tonsils Removal Surgery Coverage Under Insurance
Yes, tonsillectomy is generally covered by most major insurance policies, however, this coverage may be subject to specific policy terms such as waiting period, sub-limit, etc. If you are unsure about your insurance policy coverage, you must contact your insurance provider to find out your exact policy terms and coverage.
Non-surgical Treatment of Tonsil Infection
Here are some medications that may be prescribed for tonsil infections:
Antibiotics: A doctor usually prescribes antibiotics when the infection is bacterial. Antibiotics help eliminate the infection and reduce symptoms. Completing the full course is crucial.
Pain relievers: Over-the-counter options like acetaminophen or NSAIDs can reduce pain and fever associated with tonsil infections. Follow recommended dosages and consult a healthcare professional if needed.
Throat lozenges or sprays: Using over-the-counter products with benzocaine or menthol can numb the throat and alleviate pain and irritation temporarily.
Here are some home remedies that can provide relief for tonsil infections:
Salt water gargling: Gargling with warm salt water can help soothe a sore throat, reduce inflammation, and potentially treat infections. Dissolve ½ teaspoon of salt in 4 ounces of warm water, gargle for a few seconds, and then spit it out.
Licorice lozenges: Lozenges containing licorice can provide anti-inflammatory benefits and help alleviate discomfort and swelling in the tonsils and throat. It is important to note that lozenges should not be given to young children due to the risk of choking.
Warm tea with raw honey: Drinking warm tea with raw honey can help reduce discomfort and provide antibacterial properties to combat tonsillitis-causing infections. Choose teas like ginger or fennel that have anti-inflammatory properties.
Popsicles and ice chips: Cold temperatures can effectively relieve pain, inflammation, and swelling associated with tonsillitis. Popsicles, frozen drinks, and ice cream can be particularly helpful for young children, while ice chips can benefit older children and adults.
Humidifiers: Using a humidifier can add moisture to the air and alleviate discomfort caused by dryness in the throat and tonsils. Cool-mist humidifiers are recommended, especially when tonsillitis is caused by viruses. If a humidifier is unavailable, sitting in a steam-filled room from a shower can provide temporary relief.
While these non-surgical treatments can alleviate symptoms and aid healing, they may not fully address chronic or recurrent tonsil infections. In such cases, surgical interventions like tonsillectomy (tonsil removal) may be recommended. Consult a medical professional for an accurate diagnosis and appropriate treatment plan.
Questions to Ask Your Surgeon
Before surgery, you must ask the following questions to your surgeon to have a better understanding of the procedure and the risks and complications associated with it:
Why is surgery necessary for tonsillitis? How will it help?
Is tonsillectomy an emergency procedure?
What are the risks and complications of tonsillectomy surgery?
What precautions do I need to take before the surgery to reduce the chances of complications?
How long will it take to recover completely after the tonsillectomy surgery?
What is the cost of tonsillectomy surgery in India?
Is tonsillectomy a painful procedure?
Can tonsils grow back after the surgery?
What to eat after tonsillectomy surgery to recover quickly after the surgery?
What is the age limit for tonsillectomy surgery?
What is the success rate of tonsillectomy surgery?
Does it hurt to eat after tonsillectomy?
What are the tonsillitis medications?
How to cure tonsils permanently?
How to get rid of tonsil stones?
How to treat tonsils at home?
What is coblation tonsillectomy?
FAQs Around Tonsillectomy
How long will I have to skip work after a tonsillectomy?
At most you may have to skip work for about 2-3 days after a tonsillectomy, especially if you have a desk job. However, if you have a physically straining job, you may need to forego work for at least a week.
Is there a difference between the tonsillectomy procedures for kids and adults?
No, the tonsillectomy procedure remains almost the same for both kids and adults. The size of the endoscope and laser may be different depending on the size of the throat opening, but the rest of the surgery remains the same.
Can tonsillitis recur after tonsillectomy?
No, tonsillectomy is the removal of tonsils, permanently in most cases, therefore, the recurrence of tonsillitis after a tonsillectomy is incredibly rare.
How much pain will I be in after a tonsillectomy?
There is very little pain after a tonsillectomy and it can be easily managed through NSAID painkillers, such as ibuprofen, paracetamol, etc.
Can my family doctor perform a tonsillectomy?
No, you should consult an ENT specialist for the best tonsillectomy procedure without any postsurgical complications.
How serious is a tonsillectomy for adults?
Tonsillectomy surgery carries certain risks like any other surgical procedure, including bleeding, headache, anesthesia-related complications, nausea, vomiting or muscle soreness, etc. However, the chances of severe complications are quite rare.
The seriousness of a tonsillectomy for adults depends on various factors, including the patient’s overall health and any underlying health condition of the patient.
Is it worth removing tonsils in adults?
Yes, the removal of tonsils in adults significantly helps in reducing the symptoms of tonsillitis, throat infections & others such as coughing, headache, high temperature, etc. It may be recommended if adults experience frequent chronic tonsillitis that significantly impacts their well-being. You must consult your healthcare to understand the severity of the condition. The decision to remove tonsils in adults is made after careful consideration and consultation with a healthcare professional.
The surgeon removes the infected tonsils by eliminating the surrounding tissues that attach them to the pharynx using low radiofrequency and a saline solution. The saline cools down the heat from the radiofrequency before it can damage the surrounding tissues.
Electrocautery or Cauterization
In this treatment, the surgeon removes the infected tonsils by simply burning away the infected tissues through electric cauterization.
Cold knife dissection
As the name suggests, the surgeon ablates the swollen tonsils using a steel scalpel. There is no pain since the patient is under anesthesia, however, the risk of bleeding is high. It is the conventional treatment technique and is usually not preferred nowadays.
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I had a large goiter on my neck that wasn’t just unsightly, it caused a lot of pain. My Pristyn Care ENT doctors removed it with minimally invasive surgery and I soon had a lot of improvement.
City : AHMEDABAD
Pristyn Care ENT doctors in Delhi performed the adenoid removal operation for my son. They took very good care of him and made sure he was comfortable at all times during the surgery.
City : DELHI
Pristyn Care is a great surgery provider. I got my tonsillectomy surgery there without any issues. A care coordinator facilitated the treatment, and there were no complications during the surgery.
City : MUMBAI
I didn’t think I could get relief from my tonsil pain, but after treatment from Pristyn Care, I have completely changed my mind. My doctor at Pristyn was the best and experienced in performing tonsillectomy without any complications.
City : CHENNAI
I had a great surgical experience at Pristyn Care for my tonsillectomy surgery. My doctor explained the surgery to me and made sure I was comfortable throughout the surgery.