by Alice A. McCarthy, MBA
Adenoidectomy is the removal of the adenoids. The adenoids are located in the back of the nose near the throat. They are thought to help with immunity against infections in children.
Reasons for Procedure TOP
Adenoidectomy removes enlarged adenoids that cause problems. They can block the nasal passage, or the opening to the sinuses or middle ear. It may help treat repeated problems with:
Possible Complications TOP
Problems from the procedure are rare, but all procedures have some risk. Your doctor will review possible problems such as:
Your chances of problems may be higher for:
What to Expect TOP
Prior to Procedure
You may have:
In the days leading up to your procedure:
General anesthesia is used. It will block any pain and keep you asleep.
Description of the Procedure TOP
The adenoids will be removed through the mouth or nose. A scalpel or other tool removes the adenoids. An electrical current can also be used. Gauze packs will be placed at the site of the prevent bleeding.
Radiofrequency ablation is a type of procedure that uses heat to destroy tissue. It can decrease the volume and size of the adenoids. This method often has less bleeding. It also seems to cause less pain.
Immediately After Procedure TOP
You will be watched in a recovery room until the anesthesia wears off.
How Long Will It Take? TOP
Less than 45 minutes
How Much Will It Hurt? TOP
Anesthesia will prevent pain during surgery. Medicines are used to ease pain afterwards.
Average Hospital Stay TOP
Sometimes, you can leave on the same day. Your doctor may choose to keep you overnight if there are problems.
Post-procedure Care TOP
At the Care Center
During your stay, the healthcare staff will take steps to lower your chances of infection such as:
There are also steps you can take to lower your chances of infection such as:
Recovery will take 7-14 days. After the procedure, you may have:
To help you heal faster:
Call Your Doctor TOP
Call your doctor if any of these occur:
If you think you have an emergency, call for emergency medical services right away.
American Academy of Otolaryngology—Head and Neck Surgery
Family Doctor—American Academy of Family Physicians
Canadian Society of Otolaryngology—Head and Neck Surgery
The College of Family Physicians of Canada
Adenoidectomy. Canadian Society of Otolaryngology—Head and Neck Surgery website. Available at:
...(Click grey area to select URL)
Accessed July 2, 2018.
All about adenoids. Kids Health—Nemours Foundation website. Available at:
...(Click grey area to select URL)
Updated April 2016. Accessed July 2, 2018.
Gigante J. Tonsillectomy and adenoidectomy. Pediatr Rev. 2005;26(6):199-203.
Shehata EM, Ragab SM, Behiry AB, Erfan FH, Gamea AM. Telescopic-assisted radiofrequency adenoidectomy: a prospective randomized controlled trial. Laryngoscope. 2005;115(1):162-166.
Tonsils and adenoids. American Academy of Otolaryngology—Head and Neck Surgery website. Available at: https://www.entnet.org//content/tonsils-and-adenoids. Updated April 6, 2012. Accessed July 2, 2018.
6/2/2011 DynaMed Plus Systematic Literature Surveillance http://www.dynamed...: Mills E, Eyawo O, Lockhart I, Kelly S, Wu P, Ebbert JO. Smoking cessation reduces postoperative complications: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Am J Med. 2011;124(2):144-154.
Last reviewed June 2018 by EBSCO Medical Review Board Donald W. Buck II, MD
Last Updated: 7/2/2018
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