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What are the adenoids and why might the need to be removed?


The adenoids are made of lymphoid tissue, just like the tonsils and are found at the back of the nose.  Without using a telescope, they cannot be seen in the clinic.


They often need to be removed for the following reasons:

  1. Snoring or sleep apnoea when it is often combined with tonsillectomy

  2. A persistently blocked or runny nose

  3. As part of the treatment for glue ear (It has been shown that removing the adenoids is beneficial for children with this condition). The operation is often combined with grommet insertion



What is involved in surgery?


Surgery takes about 10 minutes and is done under general anaesthetic.  Almost all children can go home the same day.  The surgery is done through the mouth and there are no cuts or incisions on the skin



What aftercare will my child need?


By itself, adenoidectomy is not as sore as tonsillectomy.  Most children need 2-3 days of painkillers and recovery time.  When you feel that they are back to their normal self they can return to normal activities.  Occasionally they can develop smelly breath after this procedure.  If they are well and do not have a high temperature this will settle and does not require any treatment.


What are the risks of adenoidectomy?


Neil will discuss these with you.  There is a tiny risk of bleeding although in practice this is exceptionally rare.  In a very small number of children adenoidectomy can alter the voice quality although Neil uses a technique which keeps the risk of this to a minimum.

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