TONSIL AND ADENOID SURGERY
POST-OP INSTRUCTIONS - TONSIL AND ADENOID SURGERY
CALL YOUR SURGEON DURING OFFICE HOURS OR GO TO THE NEAREAST EMERGENCY DEPARTMENT IF:
You have a fever over 38.5ºC or 101.3ºF.
You have any difficulty breathing or shortness of breath.
You have increased throat pain.
You have bleeding from your nose or throat.
You have chest pain, weakness, or numbness in the face or limbs.
You have persistent nausea or vomiting.
Drinking and Eating
Drinking lots of liquids after surgery is important. Fluids soothe the throat, and keep the area clean and moist which helps with healing. In the first few days drink lots of cold drinks and eat soft, cool foods, including ice chips, popsicles, Freezies, and Jello. Avoid hot, spicy, acidic, or dry foods that might irritate the throat such as toast, crackers, tomatoes, orange juice and lemonade. Gradually advance to a soft diet. If you are having trouble eating solid foods you can put them in a blender or food processor.
You should be back to your normal diet within 10 to 14 days following surgery.
Do not use a straw for drinking.
Take pain medication as prescribed by your surgeon. Take acetaminophen (e.g. Tylenol®) every six hours for five days following surgery (maximum dose 4000 mg in 24 hours). An anti-inflammatory, such as ibuprofen (Advil®) may be added, check with your physician and pharmacist. If you are instructed to take an anti-inflammatory, space it a few hours apart from the acetaminophen. You may also receive a prescription for liquid Morphine because occasionally, a patient requires stronger pain medication. You can monitor your response to Tylenol®/Advil® and then fill the prescription for Morphine if needed. If you do take Morphine, it should be used with caution and only take as directed by your physician and pharmacist.
Most patients require less pain medication after five days. Write down when you have taken your pain medications in order to keep track of medicine you have taken and to remind you when the next dose is due.
DO NOT take homeopathic or herbal remedies unless approved by your surgeon as these can cause bleeding.
Avoid Aspirin products for 1 week.
Avoid strenuous activity, including swimming, until reassessed by your surgeon (usually within 7 to 10 days). Avoid contact with people who have infections (ie. coughs or colds). Your surgeon will advise you about returning to work/school.
Mouth Care: A white coating usually develops over the tonsil area. This is normal. Mouth odor may be present for a few days after surgery. Gentle brushing of the teeth is permitted. Rinse your mouth, do not gargle. Do NOT cough or frequently clear your throat as this may start bleeding.
Fever, Bleeding and Nausea: Following surgery, you may have a slight fever (38°C or 100° F) for 4 – 5 days. A fever over 38.5°C or 101.3°F should be reported to a doctor. Bleeding is uncommon but may occur up to two weeks after surgery. Any obvious bleeding should be reported to a doctor.
Schedule a follow-up appointment as instructed by your surgeon, usually one to two weeks from date of surgery.