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Well, and keep in mind this is coming from someone who still has her tonsils and never had grommets/tubes, I would at the very least get another opinion. With my older son, we went through ear infection after ear infection when he was the same age as Kate and Adam. I just knew the next time we were in the office, the doc would tell us it was time for the grommets/tubes. However, he had a slightly different spin on it...he wanted to give it until the Spring, when warmer weather would arrive, and see if there wasn't an improvement in his sinuses. If not, then yes, we'd probably need to explore different avenues of clearing up the issues with the fluid in his ears.

As it turned out, though, by Spring, he was much better. He had one ear infection in March and was done. It didn't have to do with the warm weather, though; it was his growth. My son hit a major growth spurt; his eustachian tubes grew and the insides of his ears weren't these cramped little places anymore where the fluid likes to hide - they drained better and he was better. We also had the whole swollen tonsils thing going on, too...and again, waiting a bit to see proved that he finally grew into the tonsils and they are just fine now. They still swell quite a bit when his allergies kick in, but not to the point that they are infected or painful in any way. Just big.

That's not to say that it is that way for EVERY child. My nephew has tubes/grommets because his ears truly were infected (not just fluid buildup but REALLY infected) and not draining at all, to the point of affecting his speech. His world is completely different with the tubes. And my niece and nephew on the other side of my family have both had their tonsils removed with amazing results...poor sleep habits/snoring all but disappeared.

With all of these kids, though, a second and third opinion were sought before any decision was made. That's the key, I think. See another doctor, just to get another opinion.

I don't know about SA, but here in the US docs are moving away from putting in tubes, especially in very young kids. Thay bring on their own set of problems, including infections around the tubes themselves, which can lead to hearing loss. (of course, tons of infections can also lead to hearing loss, so go figure) Also, the tubes don't grow with your child, so if they continue to have problems, they have to go in for longer tubes. I used to have tons of ear infections as a child, and my doc suggested 1) using ear plugs every time I was near water and 2)an ear wash to flush out fluid that caused infection (consisted of warm water, vinegar and I think rubbing alcohol...it didn't feel wonderful) This worked wonders, and no surgery needed, which would have been the next step. As for the tonsellectomy (sp?) I was a pre school teacher, and my mother also for 30+ years, and neither of us have heard of a 2 year old being so sickly that they have had this surgery done...ever! And this is in the US, where we tend to overmedicate, and do surgery for everything. It sounds a little old fashioned to me, like something docs did in the 50's when my mom had hers out. I would get a second opinion...and then a third before putting them under the knife.

Branston's grommets made a huge difference to him. He also used to be sick and get ear infection a lot. Only problem was that he had to have his grommets redone twice, first time after about a year and then again after another year. But he first had them done at about 8 months old. He also had his tonsils and adenoids removed the last time he went under and it made a huge difference. PS: they also go under general anaesthetic for grommets.

My brother had constant ENT infections when he was little - his tonsillectomy sorted those right out and he was soon as normal as any other child. Okay, maybe 'normal' is going a bit far, but at least his infections cleared up! ;-)

I had a severe inner-ear infection at age 10 for which I had grommets inserted. I've never had a problem with that ear since: it's always the other ear that goes down when I have a cold!

I can recommend both procedures for clearing up chronic infections. It does sound like Adam & Kate could benefit - so if your ENT thinks it's a good idea, I'd say go for it!

Both procedures have excellent safety records... but if you're worried, talk to your ENT.

I would get a second opinion, but only because it is surgery and you'd be wise to have two doctors tell you they need it.

One of our doctors told me (when I whined about how often Youngest got sick) that normal children have ten to fifteen colds/viruses per year.

Tubes were a blessing for my daughter. Whenever they were "in" her ears stayed clear and helped with her overall health. As she grew we would know almost immediately when they had slipped out as they would infect all over again.And that was even with using special ear molds to keep them dry during baths and swimming.They made such a difference in her that we very happily had them replaced 3 time. Now, that is NOT the norm at all - she just had reallyreally bum ears.So for a kid like her - yes for tubes.Many times the child simply has "short tubes" and once they grow the problem subsides. But much damaged can be done in the meantime. My daughter had speech and essentially lost it after a pretty severe infection. She also had her t&a at age 2 1/2 (not very common but ...) and I think for her, again, it was a wise move. Colds, strep and such dramatically were reduced.That in turn helped keep the ears clear.
None of my 4 sons needed the tubes, but at age 4 one had the t&a done, again with a dramatic change in catching colds and such greatly reduced.His overall breathing improved even when he wasn't sick - those adenoids must have been huge!
However, when he was DXed with JRA at age 6 several MDs, especially the rheumatologists, questioned if perhaps it would have been best if he had kept them. But as 2 other of my boys also have JRA AND have their tonsils and adenoids in tact I myself don't think that was the issue.
So, it depends on the child. For those 2 of mine it was the way to go. I also had mine taken out in my 20s (hurt like hell!) but again, improved my health overall.
I think that you, like me, have the problem of small kids passing colds and such back and forth, which doesn't help things.
Were I you I think I would get the opinion of 2 ENTs, and if they concur, take it from there.

I had my tonsils and adenoids taken out during another surgical procedure on my sinus cavity when I was 10. I WISH my parents had done it earlier for me.

Boog has had tubes (or grommets, if you prefer) for 8 months now. He hasn't had an ear infection at all since. He's had a much lower occurance of colds and sickness. The only thing that is a pain about it is having to be super careful in the bath, or if there's a chance he could get water in his ears. But so far (knock on wood) he's had no problems. The ENT says they (the tubes) should fall out in 18 to 24 months, so we're hopefully halfway done with them. They've also put Boog on S!ngulair (chewables) and Pulmac0rt (nebulizer) daily to help with allergies and asthma symptoms.

He hasn't had his tonsils out, but I sincerely wish that I had had mine out as a child. I'm now contemplating having them out at age 35, and it's not a happy prospect. I have recurrent tonsil stones (tonsilloliths) because my tonsils are so big and lumpy. Nasty.

So my assvice on this topic, is that if it seems that they might need them out eventually, the younger, the better. Kids bounce back so quickly, and are so resilient. They will handle the procedure much better, now, while they're young. Also, compare the misery of a few days of recovery from a small surgery, to the weeks or months of colds and sickness they'd most likely suffer over the next few years without the surgery. But, as in all things, listen to the doctor(s), then go with your heart.

GET THEM OUT!! If the kids are getting tonsilitis every month, get them out. Tonsils will back up into your entire immune system, basically poisoning your body, and being on antibiotics every month/other month will cause major resistance when/if they need medication down the road. Ear infections are not necessarily connected to the tonsilitis, I would maybe question the need for tubes (if they are hearing fine, talking fine, then no damage is being done by the infections, maybe they will outgrow), but the tonsils are a major please get done. I was seven, and went through 8 months of pure hell with my tonsils before finally getting a specialist to send me in to get them out, and now only get one or two colds per year, have never had ear infections. The actual surgery for tonsils is minor; no unsightly marks since they go down the throat, but yes I agree the anesthesia is scary :( But I believe well worth it.

I can tell you what I know and I hope its helpful. My children haven't had this but I am a nurse who used to work a pediatric floor. I would often accompany the kids and parents from the room where they would check in to the OR and back again (only actually went to the OR a few times).

The kids wouldn't be able to eat from midnight on of the procedure day so earlier = better as that would be what usually bothered the kids the most. We would normally give the child a sedative by mouth before we left their room. We would go get them checked in at the OR and mom and dad would stay with them until it was time to be wheeled into the sterile area. To be very honest, the children were usually so snowed, they really didn't care but this was the very worst part, I think for the parents and even though it was before I had children, it would break my heart to see the worried moms letting us take their kids to the OR.

The children would have the procedure and as soon as they were through, parents were allowed into the recovery room where they would be sitting next to the bed when their little patient woke up. Depending on the child, some kids come out of anesthesia differently than others. Some come out crying, some just wake up, some come out angry and fighting. Once they were completely over the anesthesia, I would bring them back up to the room where they started.

They stayed there and received pain medication and sips of clear liquids until we were certain they would keep it down, then the parents took them home. It was all (start to finish) usually over within 5 hours or so (the hospital part anyway).

I know none of this probably helps you make a decision on whether to GET the operation but I thought it might ease your mind to know exactly what to expect if you chose to do it. I have heard great things about tubes/grommets as well but again, I don't have any personal experience with them as a parent. Here (US), tonsillectomies and adenoidectomies is still a common procedure for children around your kiddos age that are finding them infected often. I think they used to take them out almost preemptively which they don't do anymore but it still isn't uncommon. Alot of people have discussed getting a second opinion and I think that is never a bad idea. I would also try to meet the anesthesiologist and maybe get a feel for how many pediatric cases he generally sees (even better if you can find one that specializes in pedi).

Good Luck making your decision!

Would they do both children the same day?

My kids had their adnoids out and 2 sets of tubes. They both had recurrent ear infections. I wish they would have taken my dd's tonsils. She gets strep several times a year.

The surgery was no problem. You would never have know either of them had had surgery by the way the acted the evening after the surgeries.

My only suggestion - take a barf bag for the car! Both of mine puked on the way home, but were fine after that.

Just wanted to clarify - when I say 5 hours, I mean from check in to check out at the hospital, not the procedure itself. That was usually somewhere around 1/2 hour if my memory serves me correctly.

My niece recently had hers out at 3yo and the difference in her has ben amazing. Apart from not being sick all the time, she really has made huge leaps in development because now she is not using all her energy to fight infections. I had mine out at 9 and can still remember how dreadful it was before that to be sick all the time. Get them out I say - and if my niece is anything to go by, it will be much harder on you than on them.

Upfront I want to say that this was just MY experience with this type of surgery.

My son had a second set of ear tubes placed (same as grommets) and an adenoidectomy/tonsillectomy when he was 2 years 9 months old. It was a horrible experience because he was so young.

He wasn't old enough to reason with and totally refused to eat or drink anything due to the pain. We couldn't convince him that drinking water or pain medicine would make him feel better. He ended up getting dehydrated and being admitted to hospital for five days. We were all miserable.

I am so glad that we had the surgery done because he has been much healthier, but I wish we would have waited until he was at least 3 years old. Just my experience here.

I think it is really a case of choosing between the lesser of two evils. For me, repeated use of antibiotics would be unacceptable. Tubes would be it. My neighbor's son got tubes at 15 months old and behind his eardrums was thick, viscous fluid that compromised his hearing. Now talking up a storm, etc etc. All surgery is scary. But I think they will be OK. At somepoint you ahve to get another opinion adn then trust the dr.

Well, you should always get a second opinion before surgery, but I know tubes made a world of difference for my brother, who got ear infections every other week practically until he was 2 1/2. And I believe that it is actually easier and better for children to have their tonsils and adenoids out when they are small.

If you trust your doc already, then go with it, if you're instincts are telling you otherwise, get a second opinion. You are the mother, and your heart is what you should follow. I'm someone who has had many surgeries for many things, and I personally don't think surgery is all that big a deal(simply because mine have all gone so well). I also have my tonsils out, where my husband still has his, I'm often the only one in my house that isn't sick, while he and the 3 children are fighting off whatever cold. I get sick maybe two, three times a year, and the worst is the flu, and not a whole lot you can do to get away from that one once it's been passed to you.
Anyway, go with your gut, not your fear or paranoia, what you truly feel is going to be the best for your children.

OK, but only if you also put in Wallace. Otherwise it is just unnecessary surgery.

My son had grommets/tubes put in when he was 3. I wish so bad that we would have had it done earlier. He has 20% hearing loss in one ear and 15% in the other.

The procedure was easy. It was actually quite fun when they gave him the "goofy juice," as they called it, to calm him a bit before wheeling him back to surgery. It was like seeing your 3 year old after drinking a bottle of your wine. Very funny.

He has only had one ear infection since and he used to never be without an ear infection. I really don't know anything about the rest of it, though, but I definetly recommend getting the tubes done if they are having constant ear infections. You don't want them to suffer from hearing loss.

I have no personal experience here, which I think makes me the most qualified to comment. Your doctor will tell you what the risks are - the potential complications, the rate of complications, the risks if you *don't* have any of the surgeries, etc. But let me say a few things about what I think are bad arguments/things to consider:

1) Both of these used to be insanely common procedures. When my mom was little, she said they would take out tonsils basically anytime you got a couple colds. Now, doctors do it much less frequently. That's not because it's a bad procedure, but because it was done too often before. It is still done because it is still necessary in some people. Same goes for the grommets/tubes; it's done less now, but not because it's less necessary. So who cares if they aren't doing it as often now? That is not evidence of anything that should matter to you. If your kids need it, they need it. If anything, he fact that it's suggested now, when doctors are more prudent about doing it, means that they probably *really* need it. This leads me to...

2) Horror stories about what happened with someone else's kid's surgery are not helpful here. The fact is that these procedures are performed frequently and some kids will have inevitably have problems. That doesn't mean someone should avoid the surgery. There is always risk in surgery, but that doesn't make it *risky*. Horror stories just overemphasize the risks. Maybe for every one complication comment posted here I will write 90-some other comments about it working to keep things in the proper perspective.

Ok. So enough of my ranting. I'm sure you'll make the right decision. Good luck :)

I had tubes put in my ears when I was 5, after ear infections too numerous to count and 2 ruptured ear drums. I remember that the anesthesia smelled like wintergreen gum and that I was so happy not to have such awful pain in my ears. I had one ear infection after the tubes, when I first went to Colorado and made several trips between 6,000 and 10,000ft elevation and my ears couldn't adjust to the pressure. Tubes were wonderful for me.

My nephew had his tonsils and adenoids removed when he was 6. According to his ENT, they were "naaaaasty." I believe that's a medical term. :) He's had much less illness since then.

I think you're getting sound advice re: 2nd opinions and informing yourself about the risks & benefits. I'm sure everything will turn out well.

My assvice: I'd get a second opinion before making a decision.

Peanut had tubes in at a year old - he had 10-12 ear infections from the time he started daycare at 3 mos up until the tubes went in. The ped waited to refer to an ENT because his ears always drained well once the infections cleared. We got to the point of needing Rocephin injections when the ped decided it was time for the ENT. The ENT took one look at Peanut's history and recommended tubes. He's now 2 and has only had 1 infection since. The procedure itself took about 5 minutes under gas (general) anesthesia. He came out of it screaming and flailing and took about 90 minutes to calm down. He was perfectly fine after that.

Best Friend's daughter, who now is almost 6, had the works. She's been through 2 sets of tubes, which helped immensely. She's also had her tonsils and adenoids out and had her sinuses scraped twice. The surgeries have helped somewhat, be she has allergies and asthma, so she still has some problems. She had some serious bleeding after the second scraping and had to be hospitalized for a couple of days. I don't know how common complications are after those types of surgeries, but it's something to keep in mind.

I would definitely get a second opinion, and try less invasive options before having surgery. There are a large amount of children who respond well after having milk taken out of their diet (I don't know *why,* just that more and more doctors around here are recommending trying it before tubes).

Also, I hate to be the first wacky person to suggest this, but you could also try chiropractic adjustment. Go to a chiropractor who regularly adjusts children if you do this. If you don't see results in a few weeks, stop going or try a different chiro.

I hope your little ones feel better soon! It's so hard to watch our babies suffer. =( ~hugs for Tertia~

My kids had 4 and 5 ear infections in a row last winter when they were in daycare around other kids... not to mention the colds, coughs and green snot that went along with it.
The ped. recommended tubes if either had one more instance.
Instead, i pulled them out of daycare.
VOILA!! Problem solved! Not one ear infection since and only one slight cold without cough or fever in the past year...

I would start with the tubes. If you don't see an improvement, then you could consider the surgery.

My son has enlarged tonsils just from genetics and our pediatrician still thinks we should wait until he's older (now 5) because surgery is always riskier on young children. Yes, he gets sore throats and stuffy noses, but they pass. You may be more frustrated b/c it may seem as if Kate and Adam are constantly boomeranging the colds off of each other, but I promise, as they pass into this next year, it won't seem as bad.

Just a thought/question (and I apologize if someone has already suggested this and I'm being redundant): could the ear infections be a major contributing factor to the cause of repeated tonsillitis? So, if the drainage in Adam's and Kate's ears were improved with the grommets, then there might be fewer infections overall, and as a result, fewer tonsillitis occurences.

The grommet insertion is lower on the risk scale in terms of surgeries (faster recovery, less anethesia). I don't mean that tonsillectomy is high on the risk scale, but I would think grommets are even less risky. Is it possible to try the grommet insertions first, see how Kate and Adam do, and then see if they need their tonsills removed?

Also a happy grommet story: I have a 24-month-old with tubes, inserted one year ago. We're quite grateful for the tubes. He's had fewer infections since the tubes. He still gets ear infections, but the symptoms are less severe and his recovery time is shorter.

Second opinion time, for sure. My experience is only with myself: when I was 4 to 5, and my sister was 2 to 3, and my mom was pregnant with my younger brother (and during the first three months or so after he was born) - my sister and I got a lot of colds and ear infections and whatnot. The doctor recommended that we have our tonsils out, but my mom didn't think she could cope with operations for two of us and deal with pregnancy/recovery with my brother at the time, so for about a year we basically had daily doses of Dimetapp (a US OTC med for kids, antihistamine and decongestent - current formulation is Brompheniramine maleate and Phenylephrine HCl, although who knows what it was in the early 1970s). We grew out of it after that, and still both have our tonsils today.

So, if you can keep it under control with OTC meds, I'd stick it out for a while. But if the antibiotics are really necessary, and not just "might as well", then going on to surgical intervention might make sense.

We are on the waiting list to have Diva's tonsils and adenoids out. She is a terrible sleeper, snoring worse then hubby, cannot breath through her nose at all and is on antibiotics every other month because of it. I had it done at age 4 and I was much better after that. Diva is 5.

I didn't get to read other comments *slow load* so sorry if I repeat. If it was me and I'd tried the other avenues such as antibiotics and such I'd do the surgery. I've also heard of great things that come with tubes. *I've heard of a few bad things as well* Though if I had a kid with chronic ear infections I would probably do it. If your still nervous you could always seek a second opinion. Okay medical opinion lol

WOW how typical of SA Dr's to so easily recommend so much...I think it's absolutely CRAZY, all 3 of those procedues...3 ear infections is nothing and I would NEVER remove the tonsils so young. I bet half the time they didn't even have tonsilitis but more a post nasal drip and sore throat. My sister lives in Cape Town and the Dr was always prescribing antibiotics for her son, here in the US, it is really a VERY last resort.

Tubes were big about 15 years ago, but now, most doctors will do anything and everything they can to avoid them. When I was 6, I was a candidate for tubes and my parents refused after talking to other parents whose children had had them put in. Most parents saw little to no improvement, or said that the improvements weren't worth the misery it caused their child. I know 4-5 people who had their tubes removed after 2-3 years due to issues with them. After reading other people's experiences on here, maybe we just grew up in an area with lousy doctors. I would definitely get a second opinion and I agree with Kara about one thing contributing to the other, as well.

Whatever you decide, I know you'll make an informed decision! I hope the kids get to feeling better, longer, too!

I had my tonsills out at 19, after a hellish childhood of tonsillitis at least once a month in the winter, and then a hellish bout of mono at 12 that I have never fully recovered from. I know that there is a lot of resistance to taking out tonsills in the US, but that is a backlash against the compulsory removal of tonsils in the 50's and 60's. My advice is to go ahead. There is evidence now that constant tonsil and adinoid inflamation interfers with sleep, which in turn interferes with behavior. With Adam's sensory issues, I would want to give him the best chance possible to get restful sleep and having good sleep (deep, not just long) can aid with his growing capacity to cope with overstimulation

I ahd my tonsills out in 2nd grade which ended a long string of illness for me. I know it is no longer popular but I have suffered no ill effects from having mine out. That said, I was 7 yrs old not a toddler.

I think the second opinion advice is good, but just to add some more info, part of the reason that so many docs no lomger recommend getting tubes or tonsils or adenoids out is because the NIH in the US did a really large randomized control study that showed no improvement or benefit with surgery vs. antibiotics & or "watchful waiting." The only exception was for children with structural birth defects in the ear, nose, throat area.
What did make a difference was the widespread use of the pnuemococcal vaccine, (spelled right?) with reduced the likelihood of illness, both in the ear and throat. It's pretty newish here and in the US so I'm not sure if your kids have had it?
Other than that, my question is allergies? If taking a dose or two of Claritin improves their ears and tonsils then right off, you know they are allergic to something, and getting an aircleaner on your furnace, ripping out carpets, etc. may provide a dramatic improvement in the inflammation and illness.
They may still need surgery in the end, but I prefer trying ripping out the carpet over the mindfuck of peds surgery anyday!

I can only offer advice on the tonsillectomy.Take them out! I had mine taken out at 3 yrsold,and have never had another case of strep throat.EVER.And,I worked in daycare for 10 yrs with plenty of strep infected children and then at a medical office.As for tubes,I also suffered from numerous ear infections as a a child,and had tubes put in 3 times.I think I just eventually outgrew getting them.And your babies will be just fine.Just take a deep breath.XXXXXoooooo

My exp was with tonsils. I had tonsillitis, strep throat, bronchitis, etc. over and over every year until finally at 5 my tonsils were removed. I quickly improved and the cascade of infections soon ended. To some extent, the earlier the better, but you might think about how they will handle the discomfort and pain of healing when they can't tell you very well what hurts. It might be worth trying the tubes/grommets for a year or so until they are better able to tell you what hurts so that the healing process is less traumatic for everyone. And who knows, maybe they'll start to grow out of the infections? With the sensory issues too, maybe waiting a bit longer would make sense so Adam can learn to handle things better before the stress of surgery?

had my tonsils taken out at 28. ick. bad bad bad. spent a week in the hospital with dehydration. do it young, they won't remember. even with all the problems immediately post-op (they pumped 3L of water into my left arm in the emergency room and it didn't help my blood pressure one bit -- i was SO SICK!), it's been the second-best surgery i've ever had. i'd highly recommend it to anyone. (the best was having my feet worked on -- now i can walk again most days!)

before i had them pulled, i got strep at least twice a year. i reached the point with my doc to where i could call and ask for a scrip for antibiotics and he'd call one in without an exam. he -never- does that for any other patient, no matter what. in his office, if you want an antibiotic, you come in for an exam, except for me and my strep.

since then i've had some sinus infections, but lots fewer and lots shorter and lots less debilitating than before. and not a single case of strep.

noids -- for for it. get it all done at once.

tubes -- def for the best. kids are much happier when they aren't sick.

it's all done under general anesthetic, so it's not pain-free put at least you don't have to listen to them howling in the next room. the anesthetic is the least of your problems. more worrisome is that they'll get addicted to the jello you feed them for a week.

by all means ... go for it. a little hassle now, a ton of hassle saved later.

My son had a tonsillectomy and adenoidectomy last February - he was just a month shy of his third birthday. The procedure went really well. They let me stay with him until he was asleep. Then they brought me to his crib side when they were done so I would be there for him when he woke up. It was hard to watch him come out of the anesthesia - he was very confused.
The recovery was at least 10 days of pretty miserable boy. He was in a lot of pain and it is hard to convince an almost three year old to drink the yucky pain medication over a very sore throat.
The benefits greatly outweighed the terrible two weeks. He snored, coughed and woke a lot a night. He suffered from a lot of respiratory infections and allergy induced asthma before the surgery. He is a great sleeper now and he hasn't had any troubles with his breathing - the asthma is almost completely gone.
My biggest concern for you would be if you are considering doing both kids at the same time. My guy needed constant mommy time - he layed on top of me for two days straight after the surgery.
Good luck.

I haven't read the other comments, and I'm only here to share my experience.

My darling daughter Isabel is 5 years old (in Kindergarten) and has her tonsils/adenoids out last spring as well as tubes put in. Things went *very well*.

Backstory: Isabel is my firstborn and was home with me (SAHM) for the first 4 years of her life. She was never on an antibiotic in all that time. A few minor colds were all she ever caught. SO HEATLHY. Then she started preschool at 4 years old. OMG...it is NOT an exaggeration to say she was sick with something every 2 weeks the entire year. She had terrible colds, fevers, ear infections (8) and was *thisclose* to being diagnosed with asthma. She was on a nebulizer all winter and nearly lost hearing in one ear due to a severely blocked ear which ruptured and the infection didn't respond to all the usual antibiotics.

She literally couldn't hear us for 2 weeks and it scared us silly. Seeing my baby girl that miserable all year was so tough. Her doctor recommended waiting on the tubes to see if her health improved in the spring (which it should do after cold and flu season). She was sicker than ever right through May. That's when we scheduled the surgery.

June 28th she had it all done and it really wasn't too bad. They let us stay with her right until they wheeled her back for surgery. The staff was WONDERFUL. She even got to take her stuffed bear with her in to the OR.

The best part was talkign with her after they gave her the "happy juice" to calm her before surgery (a sedative). She was hysterical! "I'm sooooo happy Mommy! I just loooooove you so much!" It made it a lot easier to let her go.

She was done in a hour and pain free within a week.

She hasn't had a major illness since and although she's had 2 minor colds since Kindergarten started 3 months ago, her ears have been clear. HER EARS HAVE BEEN CLEAR!!!

I'm not saying you should or shouldn't have the surgery, I'm just relaying our experience.

(((hugs))) to you and the kiddos

Hi my son had a T&A at 3.5 years old. That night when he came home from getting that done, he PIGGED out on French Fries. He was a sickly child, always on drugs for sickness. I can say he's been very healthy since I had this done a year ago. I would do it again if I had to.

Comments all over the place, no?

Tubes and tonsils are two different things. Tonsils are rarely removed in the States anymore because of the NIH study already mentioned and because the tonsils serve a useful (if frequently irritating in childhood) function in strengthening the immune system. Removing tonsils because of structural deficits is not the same thing as removing tonsils because they're frequently an inflamed point during illness. US doctors would remove for the first reason but probably not for the second reason, especially so young.

It sounds like tonsils/adenoids are just taken out more frequently in SA.

Tubes are more common in the States, because lots and lots of infections can cause hearing loss, too, and tiny ears sometimes just can't drain well. But I can't imagine many USA pediatricians advising tubes after three infections in one winter (you're just ending winter, right?), especially not for kids with low-to-normal exposure to other kids (i.e., nanny care and not daycare).

I would get a second opinion, and then -- whatever you decide -- remmeber that medical standards are quite different in the States than in most Commonwealth countries. I don't know why that is in all cases (public funding drives some of it) but there you have it.

No real comments, only smart-ass "American humor" ones.

1. Grommets. Heh heh heh. When I think of grommets I think of the little metal circles that go on sneakers where the laces come through.

2. Calling a tonsillectomy/adenoidectomy a "T&A" is the funniest thing I have heard all day.

I have no real advice except that a second opinion always seems like a good idea.

My daughter got tubes put in at 16 months, and it helped her a lot. She would get an ear infectino at least once a month. all those antibiotics are not good for them. Our problem was that one of hers fell out within 6 months. I didn't re-do it as it seems as though the frequency decreased a little bit and we had to pay quite a bit out of pocket for the surgery. I would do it again though to get her off those antibiotics. Now that she is 4, they have fallen out and she occassionally gets an infection but not too often. They do grow out of the ear infections (most kids). However, the fact that your kids are getting tonsillitis so often so young would make me say get the tonsils out. That is usually an older kids sickness so that means they will probably get it more as they get older. I think overall it will be better for their health and you won't have sick kids nearly as often. My 2 cents!

I have to say that 1 and a half seems a little young to be going down the surgery route already. They might actually grow out of getting all these things by 2 and half.

On the other hand, maybe the antibiotics they received very early on in their life knocked out some of their natural defences. My nephew has had to have the very operations you describe at the age of 5, after a very shaky start at the beginning of his life and a stay in NICU despite being full term. There is no proven link I don't imagine between antibiotics in the early weeks of life, and subsequent immunity problems, but it seems a little too coincidental.

I agree with you about the grommets viz language acquisition if their hearing really is that bad, but would be tempted personally to hold off on the tonsils and adenoids until later. Just a personal stance though.

In the US, tonsil and adnoid removal is considered a last ditch effort and is very rare. In fact, of all the thousands of kids I've met since being an adult, I only know one child that had the surgery and it was a terrible experience. Tubes are a much more common surgery and I'd definately consider them well before having major surgery. My daughter had tubes at 18 months and from that time on, had absolutely no ear infections or ear problems at all. It was as if that prodecure cured her completely. Sure, it's only one data point, but so many other people say the same thing. There is one thing to consider that is VERY important. Between 18 months and 3 years is the most significant period of language aquisition in a person's life. If receptive (heard) language is stunted because of clogged ears, a person cannot retrieve that learning. It's gone forever. This means that if your kids have gunk clogging up their ears to the point where they don't hear subtile blending sounds and have trouble distinguishing between certain words, they're never going to learn how to make the distinction later on in life, no matter how much speech therapy they get. It's just gone forever. So, with that in mind, I'd do the tubes first, which will enable the ears to drain the gunk. The language aquisition is far more important than a few colds and coughs. And there is NO guarantee that removal of the tonsils/adnoids will help at all. But tubes will, guaranteed.

I had tubes about three times when I was young (age 5, age 12, and in one ear at age 14/15). The end result is, I think, that my inner ear problems are resolved, but I have a lot of scar tissue on the ear drum, and my hearing is not so hot. However, most kids don't have to have tubes more than once, so ymmv.

As for the tonsils, I had a lot of sore throats over the course of about two years, and eventually ended up with an abcess on my tonsil (oh, THAT sucked, let me tell you). The decision was made to have the tonsils out the Christmas I was 20. The recovery sucked (mostly because I am a big baby), but it's been nearly six years and I haven't had a single sore throat since. Knock on wood!

I had tubes, my sister had tubes, my nephew has had tubes. With me and my sister my mom said they worked wonders. Before tubes my sister and I were constantly miserable with ear infection after ear infection. Once the tubes were in place we no longer had that problem.

My nephew on the other hand still got ear infections with the tubes in place. Not as many mind you, but he still got them.

If it were my child, I would get tubes put in.

As for the surgeries. I would get a second opinion. Here in the US those surgeries are no longer "routine" and are being used as a last resort, due to the complications that can arise.

Um...can you go halfway? Get the tonsils, etc. out, see if they improve and in a year get the tubes if necessary? Like you, they may improve manifold with just the tonsils out.

I was supposed to have my tonsils out and was one course of tonsilitis away from having them done and dad said "No, its unnecessary surgery."

That being said, I still get tonsilitis and ear infections but not as much as a child (but am a swimmer, so the ears could be part of that as well).

Get a second opinion, IMHO :)

I had my tonsils removed when I was 6 after the doctor recommended it to my mom. I was there every bloody week with either an ear infection, sinus infection or tonsils and after the op I didn't have another ear infection and just some minor trouble with my sinuses.

Best thing my mom could ever have done for me and it was so worth it! I grew up in South Africa and had it done in Joburg Gen in 1989 and the experience didn't kill me... ;-)

As a child I had tonsillitis all the time. They didn't recommend me getting my tonsils out, I guess because of the studies mentioned above. I did outgrow my sickness.
As an adult, my tonsils are enlarged and pitted, but I don't get tonsillitis anymore and they rarely give me trouble.

Before going the surgery route, I would recommend getting them adjusted as someone mentioned above. A cranial sacchral (sp?) or chiropractor could possibly help with the drainage and shift things around in their heads. I am surprised they are sick so much, since they are at home with Rose and not at daycare.

My ten month old has never had an ear infection, but I think in the states they're trying to not give antibiotics for ear infections as much because of the overuse of antibiotics.

I remember, very clearly, having my tonsils out at age 4. Yes, it was scary and painful, but actually my mom had just had hers out the month before, giving me some sense of what to expect (plus I'd been promised lots of ice cream afterwards), so it didn't freak me out that much. And I never once had an ear infection again. So I considered it a good deal, overall. I don't know anything about grommets or tubes (they actually sound scarier to me, based solely on my irrational dislike of foreign objects in my body), but maybe they would be a good first step, and if that doesn't clear up the problem, you can do the surgery later?

Had my tonsils out at 3 and never had another ear infection. Did get to eat lots of ice-cream, which was a plus.
Look, these are your kids - get as many doc opinions as you need to make a decision, and don't let anyone make you feel badly about it.

You know what strikes me as weird? That the doctor would want to do this to both of them. I know they're twins, but they're fraternal (obviously) and what are the odds that two kids with the same level of genetic similarity of any pair of siblings would have to have the same operation(s) at the same time? I honestly don't know, but it seems fishy enough that I would get a second (third?) opinion.

Are they always sick simultaneously? If not, it smells weird to me... But what do I know, I'm not a doctor.

For some reason the trend in the US has been away from tonsillectomies so that some kids who really ought to have them (kids with constant ear infections & sore throats) don't get them in childhood & then have to have them as adults, when it is a much more serious procedure. My poor husband spent half his childhood in agony with chronic strep throat. I had chronic (very painful) ear infections. Our experience is not uncommon.

I don't know, I'm not a doctor, but I can tell you that not having the surgery done can cause problems. Also that little kids heal pretty quickly. But that doesn't mean it's the right thing for your kids.

Good luck Tertia, I know you'll reach the right decision.

Last winter my daughter (who is 3 months older than Adam and Kate) had 3 ear infections plus one bout of tonsillitis / strep throat. I asked at what point they consider tubes, and my pediatrician said they wouldn't refer us to an ENT unless she'd had 5 ear infections in a year. Since it was March, she was hopeful we were through most of the winter sick season. Sure enough, my DD has now made it 10 months without an ear infection or any need for antibiotics (I hope I didn't just jinx myself). She's been much healthier this year. Aren't you entering summer now? If so, I'd be tempted to hold off a bit and see if they get healthier. It seems a bit early to be considering such intervention. All my daughter's friends seem to get several ear infections a year, so your kids don't seem atypical. However, if they do continue I know a lot of people who've had success with tubes.

I used to have HORRIBLE ear infections as a kid. So bad I couldn't even open my mouth to speak or eat. I had tubes put in and an adnoidectomy (tonsils are still in) when I was 3 or 4 and haven't had an ear infection since. I also had only about 20-50% of my hearing prior to the surgery, now it's nearly normal. I'm pro-surgery if the ENT is recommending it.

I didn't read all the comments, but I just wanted to add my limited experience. When I was little, I always had ear infections and tonsilitis. I can remember being miserable all the time because of it! When I was in preschool (3-4yrs old?), I had my tonsils removed. I can't recall getting a severe ear infection, etc after. And I got to eat all the icecream I wanted for a couple days, which is a big thing for a kid!

I've heard great things about the tubes/grommets, but I can't recall ever knowing someone who had them.

Either way, I would get a second opinion. Yes, tonsils aren't something that we need anyways, but whenever you are talking about surgery (especially on your children!), it's always good to get another opinion.

Take Them Out!!!

I had all of that done when i was 5, i only get tonsilitis which is called pharyngitis, if you dont have any tonsils, once a year now, instead of every other week and i didnt have it at all from 5 to 26. I also had 2 sets of grommits which helped :)

Do it! Had mine out at age 4. It was fine, I remember riding a tricycle around the hospital floor. The older they are, the worse it will be. I was so sick all of the time before that. After... no earaches, no colds, no tonsilitis.

Tough decision for a parent - easy one from this patient's perspective.

Well, everyone else is giving their two cents....

I would definitely get a second/third opinion. Like someone else mentioned it seems very suspicious to me that someone is recommending all of those procedures for both children.

As for myself - I had horrible ear infections as a child. Never to the point of compromised hearing, but often to the point of screaming unbearable pain. I never got tubes put in (I really, really enjoyed swimming) and as an adult I suffer from no ill efffects (or ear infections.) The wash that was suggested - vinegar and alcohol (isopropyl) was one that was employed at my home religiously once it was recommended and it did *wonders.* We did it every night and after every time I swimmed. Doesn't smell great, but it doesn't hurt at all.

As for tonsils, I was one more positive strep test away from having mine removed (not because I was ill, but because I was a carrier of it for darn near a year) but I kept mine. I do have enlarged tonsils and I get tonsilliths, but the only time they *ever* bother me is when I'm pregnant, and that's just because I get horrific morning sickness anyway. I get sick (colds, flu, etc.) less often that most of the people I know, so... There really was no need for it and I'm glad it wasn't done.

Also, to echo one other person, perhaps you should rule out allergies? I'm allergic to just about everything, so with drugs I'm miserable. Sore throat, dripy nose, etc. But put me on a daily dose of Claritan and I'm just peachy!

Okay, that last sentence is obviously *without* drugs...

Bah! Too tired to type!

I'm pretty sure they give general anesthesia to put tubes in. At least they did the two times I had it done to me in the 80s. And one of those times they did an adnoidectomy at the same time. My dad was pissed they didn't do a tonsilectomy while they were in there anyway, eventhough I had never had any tonsil problems. I say, if you're going to do the "grommets," go for the whole shebang.

ok, here's maybe more info than you wanted, from the medical database "Up To Date".... this summarizes the latest findings from scientific studies. The studies show only moderate improvement for kids with ear tubes, and an increased risk of eardrum perforation for kids under 5. And, no clear evidence supporting tonsillectomy unless breathing is compromised.

"Adenoidectomy or adenotonsillectomy — Adenoidectomy, with or without tonsillectomy, does not appear to be an effective primary preventive measure for children with recurrent AOM ("acute otitis media", that is, ear infection). Two randomized clinical trials run in parallel failed to demonstrate a substantial effect of adenoidectomy or adenotonsillectomy on the occurrence of AOM in patients 3 to 15 years of age with recurrent otitis media and no previous history of tympanostomy tubes, whether or not they had evidence of enlarged tonsils or adenoids [46].

The relative merits of adenoidectomy at the time of tympanostomy tube placement in children with recurrent AOM (more than three episodes in the past six months) or chronic otitis media with effusion were evaluated in a prospective trial [47]. A total of 217 children with no previous surgery (aged 12 to 48 months) were randomly assigned to adenoidectomy with insertion of tympanostomy tubes or insertion of tympanostomy tubes alone. There was no difference in the incidence of subsequent AOM between the two groups [47].

In contrast, adenoidectomy with or without tonsillectomy may be helpful in reducing the number of episodes of AOM in children who have recurrences of AOM after an initial placement of tympanostomy tubes. A retrospective study from Canada suggested that adenoidectomy or adenoidectomy plus tonsillectomy at the time of tube insertion substantially reduced the incidence of subsequent hospitalizations and repeat tympanostomy tube insertion in patients greater than or equal to 2 years of age [48].

Summary — When the decision is made to proceed with tympanostomy tubes, concurrent adenoidectomy is indicated only for patients with moderate to severe nasal obstruction [1]. In children who continue to have recurrent AOM after the extrusion of initial tympanostomy tubes, and are undergoing repeat placement of tympanostomy tubes, adenoidectomy may be of benefit and is often performed [1]. Tonsillectomy is usually not indicated in these patients [1]."

Let me know if you want the whole thing - it's pretty long. I can email it to you (just delete the extra "m" from my email address...)


... and, Up To Date also mentions some promising studies showing markedly reduced incidence of ear infections in kids given xylitol syrup or chewing gum, as well as in kids given a probiotic nasal spray. You might also talk with a good homeopath. That can make a big difference for preventing/treating recurrent ear infections...

Ok - my two cents worth. T has had 3 nasty rounds of tonsillitis - all very close together 3/4 weeks apart. Our doctor (SA) said that they would want to take them out after the fifth time. I started reading up on it, and must say that the general idea i'm getting is that it is not such a good idea to whack them out! I seriously reduced the amount of milk and milk products he eats and also got some homeopathic stuff for tonsils (Natura). He's not had any problems in the last three months (touch wood). Good luck!

we got the same recommendation. i ignored it. surgery was not for my baby. spring was a few weeks away, and that's all it took for the ear aches to cease. plus, once he was up and walking, the tubes werent collecting fluid.
most ear infections are not bacterial so they shouldnt be on antibiotics in that case.

Let me just say this. DON'T DO THEM BOTH AT THE SAME TIME! Taking care of two very upset kids will not be easy

As I mentioned in my first comment, my mom had her tonsils out when she was little. I didn't, but I wish I had. I had strep throat and colds ALL THE TIME. Tons and tons and tons of times.

Now, in addition to my random colds, I get tonsil stones which are terrible things. I have considered going to my doctor and asking to have my tonsils removed (though I'm 29 and getting old for it), just so I don't have to deal with it anymore.

I did some looking on WebMD, and they specifically recommend that chidren under the age of three not have a T&A because of excessive complications. http://www.webmd.com/hw/sleep_disorders/hw48845.asp (Yes, it's listed under apnea surgeries.) They also have a good article on ear infections and hearing loss http://www.webmd.com/content/article/31/1728_77706.htm THe study basically implies that watchful waiting for up to 9 months will do no harm to language skills.

Hi Tertia:
I thought that there was some interesting information here:

When I was small I had perpetual ear infections and throat sickness. My pediatrician always thought we should consider removing my tonsils and adenoids but never did. I did have tubes put in twice which was a blessing because I couldn't hear prior to the surgeries.

I know these days docs are moving away from doing these surgeries but I think there is a lot of merit for them under the right conditions.

I continued to be rather sickly. I went away to college and still had a lot of problems catching every cold. It got to where I was used to the pain of a sore throat all the time. My freshman year of college it got out of hand. My tonsils were bleeding and I was always fighting a head cold. The sickness over 20 years had messed up my soft palate as well. I was always tired. I finally had the surgery 2 days before Christmas. Everybody warned me it would be a difficult recorvery as an adult. The result was so fabulous I felt better than I had previously almost immediately. I could breathe and my oxygen saturation levels were higher. I didn't get another sore throat for probably 3 years after that. Now when I get them they are mild. I hardly ever EVER get sick. I feel like I have a whole new life.

It makes me mad that I didn't have the surgery as a child. I missed a lot being sick all the time.

I have hobbies now that I just wasn't up for previously.

So, if you feel there is a need, and your doctor feels there is a need, I'd say go for it.

Kyra had 9 ear infections in a 4 month span. So we put tubes in her ears. She was 18 months at the time and non verbal. She slowly started getting speech and is now talking so much (3 years old). But the speech delay from the first 18 months is taking a long time to make up. She also had sleep apnea, so 3 months ago, we had her tonsils and adenoids removed. It was a godsend. She now sleeps, for long periods of time, because she can breathe at night. I can't say enough good about having these surgeries done.

Good luck, whatever you decide.


My view is Grommets are a SA FAD thing - every ENT in SA at this time and a lot of GP's are simply prescibing - Oh Grommets.

Get a 2nd Opiion on this SERIOUSLY

As the mother of a 7 year old who has had many surgeries, I know if is very stressful. However, the benefits do outway the risks. My DD has always recovered the same day from her surgeries (many related to a cleft). In most cases I never had to give her pain medication. Acetaminephin did the trick. So, only you can make the choice, but remember that kids heal much more quickly than adults and they don't feel pain in the same way that we do. Yes, they feel pain, just not as great.

Good luck.

I have 3 kids and have only dealt with one ear infection, so as a mother I do not have experience here. However, my husband lost all hearing in one ear due to chronic ear infections as a child. He has had to have 2 surgeries on that ear to try to rebuild the ear drum, but they have not been successful. I know many children (here in the US) who have tubes put in, and also some who have adenoids removed. I agree - the incidence of infections and illness decreases dramatically, and all of the children endured the procedures wonderfully. Good luck!

My husband had tubes in his ears (his first ear infection came at the tender age of 5 days old) and they helped him quite a bit. Have you had them tested for allergies? I used to get all sorts of ear and throat things (strep, etc.) and it turns out it was all from my allergies.

One of the kids at the preschool had the surgical procedures that you mention done, and it took a good month for her to come back regularly, but BOY could you see a difference right away. I would maybe get a second opinion, wait till the New Year or after the next growth spurt, and try topical remedies/preventative measures, and THEN decide. But generally I would be pro-surgery and anti-medication in the long term because it's possible that the medication will cease to be as effective.

My first child never needed ANY of that stuff--was maybe on antibiotics twice by the age of two. My second, on the other hand, had so many ear infections that it was ridiculous. Our pediatrician did not believe much in tubes, but finally referred us to an ENT. The tubes were a good choice for us, although they can become clogged and need to be replaced. I, too, had my tonsils out as an adult, and plan on having my kids done young if they show the littlest sign of needing it because I wouldn't wish that on anybody and wish my parents had done it for me! I would want to wait until they were older, though, maybe four, so that they would be more reasonable patients who could communicate their needs and follow commands like "TAKE YOUR MEDICINE!" a little better in trying times, so that the post-op TLC is easier. My second child's ENT eventually took the adenoids, too, because they were severely infected with something nasty that was resisting multiple antibiotics, and that wasn't a big deal, really. It's more the tonsils I'd worry about, and in fact our ENT won't do them in a child under two at all, and prefers not to do them until at least three (when they did the adenoids I asked about the possibility of combining that with the tonsils to avoid using anesthesia twice but am now glad we're waiting). The tubes I wouldn't think twice about--the procedure is so brief that you don't even have time to work up a proper cry in the waiting room and they're normal by the end of the day usually.

Tubes at 18 months saved me from insanity. The boy had an ear infection (by which I mean fever over 102, up to 104 on time) starting at 4 months.

I don't know if anyone else pointed this out but ear tubes ARE a general anesthesia procedure for young children.

At 3 years old, tonsils and adenoids came out for him, too. The snoring was impressive; teeth were discoloring from mouth breathing all the time; 5 times (FIVE) he was in for 'pink eye' that was gunk backing up from the adenoids. Amazingly he had no fever and presented completely healthy. Surgeon reported his adenoids were completely infected and he had to stay the night on antibiotics.

You probably don't have such a dire case, but I was very happy that in the end he was significantly more healthy and I was finally -- when he was 3+ years old -- able to sleep regularly.

It was stressful both times when he went off with the nurses. At 18 months it was awful, really, because they took him and he started to scream. Then he went into a room and the screaming ... stopped. I knew of course he was under anesthesia, but still, creepy. At 3 yp they involved him in a pre-op tour and discussion of what was going on.

Oh, also he just had an ear drum repair last year when a hole was found. It's a known complication and the patch was fine. Another anesthesia surgery but I was reasonably calm that time.

Good luck.

I too think you should get a second opinion before surgery, at least regarding the tonsils and adenoids. The ear tubes are perhaps less controversial, and less risky?

Three ear infections doesn't sound like that many to me - over what period of time? Though of course you would rather not have any, is that realistic?

Is the doctor really sure that both your children require this surgery? Do they both have an equally severe history of infections (check your own records), and do both have equally enlarged tonsils and adenoids? They are "fraternal" twins so don't necessarily have identical ears-noses-throats. While family history and genetics might give them the same problem, it's worth double checking before agreeing to matching treatments.

I like the Wallace and Gromit joke from commenter "plain Jane mom".
Good luck with whatever you decide to do.

i say take them out. i was a kid who had frequent tonsilitis and had them removed before i hit teen years.

it was the best thing in the world.

i have grown up big and strong too (see my website for evidence).

I had my tonsils out when I was 5 because I was always sick...had bad allergies, although they didn't figure that out until I was 6. It made absolutely no difference at all. II I were in your shoes, I would definitely get a second opinion and I would wait as long as I could. I remember feeling quite scared in the hospital even at 5 years old. Can't imagine my boys going in for surgery at this age. They are 2 next week.

Our daughter, 21 months, has had 3-4 ear infections in 3 months (the exact duration of time she's been in group day care), and we have decided to go ahead with tube surgery this Friday. Sure, we can wait until she gets the requisite 6 infections in 6 months (the typical U.S. criterion for recommending tubes), but at this rate, with a new ear infection with every new cold, and with a new cold every 2 weeks, we know we'll make the quota by mid-January. We've just decided we didn't want to make her suffer for that many more weeks and on that many more rounds of antibiotics before doing what appears to be inevitable anyway...

I'm a little nervous about the surgery, mostly for the pre-surgery prep time because she hates having strangers come anywhere near her. But we're hoping for the best.

I support both procedures too. My daugher had the T&A at age 3 after repeated bouts of tonsillitis and has been free of problems ever since. My son had the ear tubes at 11 months after repeated ear infections (5+ in one winter)and his hearing and walking improved within days.

The anesthetic is quite light and neither child was out of my sight for more than 15 minutes (the procedures are that quick). Yes, its scary for you as their mother but the difference in their health, happiness and temperment is worth it!

Couple comments...

Had mine T & A removed at age 5... apparently prior to that... I had ear infections, sore throats and was an antibiotic addict. Since - have not had strep throat at all... in spite of working as a PICU/pediatric nurse. So for me it was a good thing. My sister had to have "grommets" /"tubes a number of times - she was just a freak. Helped tremendously though for her as well.

I had to make a similar decision for my son. He had constant ear infections and the middle ear never really drained. He was constantly on antibiotics and decongestants. I finally took him to an ENT doc when he was two and we did go forward with surgery, and yes, it was scary. He had the tubes or grommets put in. The ENT told me that he would check the adenoids when my son was under the anesthesia, and if they were enlarge he would remove them. It turned out that they were enlarged and so he did remove them. My son didn't get tonsillitis, so we left the tonsils alone. After he had the operation, he never had another ear infection. For us, it was the right decision and well worth it. He didn't seem to mind the surgery was feeling good the next day. Good luck with your two!

I am having an exam on Friday and one of the topics on it is tonsillectomy. It is for nursing. I am under the impression that a tonsillectomy should not be done a child until they are 3 because it is too bloody. There, my two cents.

I had tonsils removed as an adult (almost wrote 'a grown-up' - that's mothering for you) and it hurt like blazes. For 11 days. Trumped my caesar section waaaay up. I can't quite believe that kids don't suffer at all, although it seems that their pain is much less.
Not to say don't do it - just make sure that you have somebody who believes in pain control, not 'just take panadol'.
And I quite understand you - dd needs to have umbilial hernia repaired, and the thought gives me conniptions.

Just a quick note, Tertia. Any discomfort in the short term, is worth it in the long run. Tau had tubes inserted a few months ago, and what a difference!


I was concerned about my baby undergoing anesthetic too, but he took it like a little champ! Putting in the ear plugs at bath time is a pain because he immediately tries to pull them out ... but yours are big enough to explain to them why they need to keep them in ;-)

Take care,
Sue (emailed you to say hi from San Diego last week)

hi Tertia,

I had my tonsils and adonoids out at 7, my mom had hers out the same year, all I can say is the younger you are the better. We both had very bad years of tonsillitus and being sick every month is no fun. My sister had Grommets , she has a toddler, it helped with her ear ache.

I had my tonsils & one (Just freaking one!) adenoid out when I was like... 12 maybe. I don't really get a lot of sore throats now but when I do get sick one side of my nose is really clogged and the other is fine. Thanks so much Dr for only taking out ONE adenoid.

I had a host of complications with the surgery; I had to stay overnight because I almost bled out. They had to put a balloon tampon thing up my nose to stop the bleeding and a nurse took it out early, and I started throwing up blood clots.

After that though I was fine. My immune system sucks as it is so I can't tell how much of an improvement it is but it's great to at least have one nostril that can breathe when I'm sick!

Just my 2 cents. Don't let them just take out one. ;P

This is comment number 92 so I doubt if anyone will read it, however I wanted to have my say. Down here in Australia, surgeons are quite hesitant to take out tonsils - you basically have to be very very sick before they would even consider it. It seems like they have the same way of thinking in the States.
However, back when I was young, it was a little easier to get the operation performed. As a baby I had enormous trouble with ENT infections. My mother was a registered nurse and asked the surgeon (a work colleague) to put me in for surgery at age 3. Basically, I never looked back. Was never sickly after that at all, and cant say that it affected my immune system in any way.
I'm really glad that I had them out young. Mum says I recovered very quickly, and wasn't too traumatised. A young chap at work just had a week off with tonsilitis - this is his umpteenth bout - and they are only just considering letting him have the op.
Tertia, go for it. Your kids cant thank you, but you really can save them from a lot of future pain and suffering.

Tertia, go for it.

My son had his adenoids taken out when he was 18 months old. Since then he's only had 1 ear infection. He hardly ever gets sick where I'd have to take time off from school or work. He started at a daycare around the time he turned 1. Soon after that, the ear infections started. It was so hard for the both of us to try to get some sleep. He would only be able to sleep in a sitting position. The surgery went fine. He didn't seem to be in pain afterwards, wasn't cranky, etc.

Here in Finland the doctors are ettin pretty apprehensive about prescribing antibiotics to ear infections. They'll try a couple of rounds of antibiotics, and if they don't help, the child will go on to have the tubes put in or his adenoids and/or tonsils out. It's also worth a try to treat the infection with just pain medication, i.e. tylenol (paracetamol) and analgetic ear drops. In many cases the ear infections are caused by a virus, so antibiotics wouldn't do any good anyway. So, they let the virus run its course, and treat the infection with analgesics.

Both of my older boys had them taken out (T&A) one at 7 and one at 4. My older boy had tonsils so big they nearly touched when he was healthy!!

My younger son was skinny as a rail but finally started putting on weight when he had the surgery. For us it was a good move.

Good luck in your decision!

hi my son has had 2 sets of tubes inserted and the have fallen out within a few weeks i was wondering if it would be best to get them done again and get his tonsills out aswell

I know how difficult to the parents that they see their child that feel uncomfortable with that kind of situation.


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