Tonsillectomy and Adenoidectomy Treatments & Care

How do I care for my child after a tonsillectomy and adenoidectomy?

We recommend the following:

  • increased fluid intake
  • pain medication, as prescribed
  • no heavy or rough play for a duration of time recommended by the surgeon

What are the risks of having a tonsillectomy and adenoidectomy?

Any type of surgery poses a risk to a child. About 5 percent of children begin bleeding from the surgery site about five to eight days after the surgery and may require additional blood and/or surgery. Some children may have a change in the sound of their speech due to the surgery. The following are some of the other complications that may occur:

  • bleeding (may happen during surgery, immediately after surgery, or at home)
  • dehydration (due to decreased fluid intake; if severe, fluids through an intravenous, or IV, catheter in the hospital may be necessary)
  • fever
  • difficulty breathing (swelling of the area around the surgery; may be life threatening if not treated immediately)