Head and Neck A18


Head and neck procedures

Adenoidectomy is often performed for the following indications:

  • Recurrent or persistent otitis media (due to obstruction of the eustachian tube by enlarged adenoids)
  • Adenoid hypertrophy resulting in upper airway obstruction (snoring, obstructive sleep apnoea)
  • In association with a tonsillectomy for recurrent tonsillitis
  • Recurrent or chronic sinusitis or adenoiditis
  • Dysphagia with failure to thrive
  • Speech impairment 

Complications of adenoidectomy include haemorrhage, usually manifesting as persistent nasal bleeding within 6 to 12 hours of operation. The patient must be returned to theatre and the bleeding managed by insertion of a post-nasal pack or other methods of haemostasis such as diathermy.

Secondary haemorrhage is rare, occurring 5-10 days postoperatively. It resolves with bed rest and antibiotic therapy.

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