How do you remove tonsils?
The procedure is carried out under general anaesthetic. A gag is inserted to open the mouth.
There are 2 methods in removing or reducing the size of the tonsils including bipolar dissection and the coblation technique and your surgeon will discuss the benefits and risks of each procedure.
The coblation technique uses radio frequency energy to create a plasma field that ablates the tonsil tissue at lower temperatures. The recovery is less painful than the bipolar dissection technique. However there is a risk that any remaining tonsil tissue may grow and if there is a history of tonsillitis this may recur within the tonsil tissue left behind.
The tissue overlying the tonsil is incised and the tonsil dissected away from its bed using fine forceps which cauterise the blood vessels to prevent bleeding. The actual procedure takes between 15 - 20 minutes, with the whole operation lasting about 30-40 minutes. In older children and adults with very scarred tonsils the surgery may take longer because of increased scarring. The surgery is often combined with an adenoidectomy if there are any nasal airway issues.