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Adenoidectomy; Removal of adenoid glands
Adenoid removal is surgery to take out the adenoid glands. These glands are located between the airway you breathe into through your nose and the back of your throat. Often, adenoid removal is done at the same time as a tonsillectomy, surgery to remove the tonsils. Adenoid removal is also called adenoidectomy.
Most adenoidectomies are done on children.
Your child will be given general anesthesia before surgery. This means they will be unconscious and unable to feel pain.
Your child will stay in the recovery room after surgery until they are awake and can breathe easily, cough, and swallow. Most patients can go home several hours after this surgery.
Adenoidectomy may be recommended when:
The adenoids normally shrink as children reach adolescence. Adults rarely need adenoidectomy.
A week before the surgery, do not give your child any medicine that makes it hard for their blood to clot unless their doctor tells you to. Two of these are ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin) and aspirin.
Ask your the doctor what medicines your child should take on the day of surgery.
The day before the surgery, your child should have nothing to eat or drink after midnight. This includes water.
The day of the surgery, give your child the medicine they are supposed to take with a sip of water.
Click here to see a video about before a child's tonsil or adenoid surgery.
Your child will go home on the same day as surgery. Complete recovery takes about 1 to 2 weeks.
Click here to see a video about after your child's tonsil or adenoid surgery.
Most children breathe through their nose better and have fewer and milder sore throats and ear infections after an adenoidectomy.
In rare cases, adenoid tissue that has been removed may grow back. This does not usually cause problems.
Wetmore RF. Tonsils and adenoids. In: Kliegman RM, Behrman RE, Jenson HB, Stanton BF, eds. Nelson Textbook of Pediatrics. 18th ed. Philadelphia, Pa: Saunders Elsevier; 2007:chap 380.
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