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Adenoid removal

Adenoid removal is used to treat breathing problems or infections. We explain how it is carried out and what to expect after surgery.

Adenoid removal surgery (adenoidectomy) involves the surgical removal of the adenoid glands, which sit behind your nose at the top of your throat.

The adenoids may need to be removed due to impaired breathing, infection or if they are causing earaches.

Adenoid removal surgery is usually performed on an outpatient basis under general anaesthesia, and involves the mouth being held open while the adenoids are removed with surgical tools.

Electricity or radiofrequency energy can also be used to heat the tissue and remove it.

Recovery can range from a few hours to 1 or 2 days, although recovery time increases with age. Patients should refrain from eating spicy and acidic foods until they have fully recovered.

The possible complications of any surgery can include an unexpected reaction to a general anaesthetic, excessive bleeding, developing a blood clot (usually in a vein in the lower leg, known as DVT - deep vein thrombosis) and infection.

Signs of infection include uncontrolled pain, redness, swelling, oozing from wounds, and fever.

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