222 S. Greenleaf St., Suite 102, Gurnee, IL 60031
Office: 847-662-4442 Fax: 847-662-4446
1880 West Winchester Rd., Suite 103, Libertyville, IL 60048
Office: 847-367-5770

Tonsillectomy and Adenoidectomy

Tonsils and adenoids are lymphatic tissue that for the bodys first line of defense as part of the immune system. They contain cells that sample bacteria and viruses that enter the body through the mouth or nose.  However they themselves sometimes become infected. In some individuals, they become more of a liability than an asset and cause airway obstruction or repeated bacterial infections.

WHAT ARE TONSILS AND ADENOIDS?

Tonsils and adenoids are similar to the lymph nodes or glands found in the neck, groin, and armpits. Tonsils are the two round lumps in the back of the throat. Adenoids are high in the throat behind the nose and the roof of the mouth.  They are not visible through the mouth or nose without special instruments.

The two most common problems affecting the tonsils and adenoids are recurrent infections of the nose and throat, and significant enlargement that leads to nasal obstruction and/or breathing, swallowing, and sleep problems.

TONSILLITIS AND ITS SYMPTOMS

Tonsillitis is an infection of the tonsils. One sign is swelling of the tonsils. Other symptoms are:

  • • Redder than normal tonsils
  • • A white or yellow coating on the tonsils
  • • A slight voice change due to swelling
  • • Sore throat, sometimes accompanied by ear pain.
  • • Uncomfortable or painful swallowing
  • • Swollen lymph nodes (glands) in the neck
  • • Fever

SYMPTOMS OF ENLARGED TONSILS AND ADENOIDS

Enlarged tonsils and adnenoids is usually a disease of childhood.  If your childs adenoids are enlarged, it may be hard to breathe through the nose.  You may notice your child breathes through their mouth and not there nose most of the time or has a chronic runny nose.  If the tonsils and adenoids are enlarged, breathing during sleep may be disturbed leading to loud snoring, restlessness during sleep, and possibly pauses in breathing while sleeping (sleep apnea).

HOW ARE TONSIL AND ADENOID DISEASES TREATED?

Bacterial infections of the tonsils, are first treated with antibiotics. Removal of the tonsils (tonsillectomy) and/or adenoids (adenoidectomy) may be recommended if there are recurrent infections despite antibiotic therapy, and/or difficulty breathing due to enlarged tonsils and/or adenoids. Such obstruction to breathing causes snoring and disturbed sleep that leads to daytime sleepiness, and may even cause behavioral or school performance problems in some children.

Chronic infections of the adenoids can affect other areas such as the eustachian tube (the passage between the back of the nose and the ear) leading to chronic ear infections. Studies show that removal of the adenoids may help children with chronic ear infections also.