Tonsillectomy is a surgery performed to remove the tonsils.
Tonsillectomy may be performed for a number of reasons including:
Chronic infections causing throat pain
Multiple acute infections requiring antibiotics
Asymmetry, in which case one tonsil is larger than the other
Persistent halitosis, or bad breath
Tonsil stone, or tonsilith accumulation
Enlarged tonsils causing sleep apnea or swallowing problems
Tonsil surgery is performed more often for children, although still is commonly performed for adults. Tonsillectomy is performed with a patient asleep under general anesthesia. A mouth gag is inserted to open the mouth and identify the tonsils. The tonsil is grasped using a fine instrument and separated from normal tissue using a knife, coblation device, or bovie cauterization tool.
Patients are usually discharged home the same day after observation. Pain after tonsillectomy is quite common and is treated with medication. Initially to prevent the risk of bleeding, patients are placed on a post-tonsillectomy diet which includes plenty of liquids and soft foods which are served at room temperature.