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Nurse Mandy
Nurse Mandy, Nurse
Category: Health
Satisfied Customers: 498
Experience:  LPN since 2000. Experience in Orthopedics, Dermatology, Cardiology & Ear Nose and Throat
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Were an American family currently living in Germany because

Customer Question

We're an American family currently living in Germany because of my job. Our son is 5 years old and getting ready to have a tonsillectomy in a German hospital in about a week. We meet with his ENT one more time this Tues before the surgery the following Monday. I wanted to ask if you can tell me what the current approach is in US pediatrics regarding post-op care for a tonsillectomy. Also, what are the most common pain meds that are prescribed to help young children during the first few days after the surgery? Thanks very much for your help - this info will give us a good basis to use as a "check" against the info we receive from the local ENT. Sincerely, XXXXX XXXXX
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Health
Expert:  CamilleRN replied 3 years ago.
Welcome to JustAnswer Health...and thank you for your question. I am a verified Expert and am delighted to help you today. For the most part, these procedures are safe and effective...and are usually done as an outpatient which means he should be able to go home the same day as the surgery. The tonsillectomy is done under general anesthesia, and afterwards he will be in a recovery area for an hour or two until he is awake and all vital signs are stable. During this time pain medication may be adminstered via IV. Once he is out of recovery he will probably be moved to another area ( Some places keep the child in the same area before and after) Once all is well the IV will be taken out, you will meet with a Doctor or Nurse who will give youj clear discharge instructions such as what to take and when .. pain medication will be given or a prescription will be written. Once home he may have a sore throat.... this is the most common compliaint, but some children experience this more than others. Take pain medications and antibiotics as ordered and make sure he drinks plenty of fluids( popcycles are a favorite after this surgery). Foods should be esy to swallow such as ice cream, oatmeal, applesauce, mashed potatoes. Rest is very important so encourage lots of it. Activities should be restricted until he sees the Doctor for his Post op exam. I hope this information helps, please let me know if I can help further:-)
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
I understand the Dr and/or Nurse will typically provide instructions, etc. post-op, but as I indicated, we're looking to get the US approach to this so we can compare with what hear from the German doctor. Areas of concern are: what kind of prescription pain made might typically be used with a 5 yr old in the USA?...how soon would a child normally return to pre-school?...when can we start with the solids you mentioned like oatmeal, apple sauce, or mashed potatoes?...any normal post-op side effects we should be aware of like nausea, vomiting, ear aches, others?...what are the biggest post-op concerns that a parent should be aware of (infection? bleeding?...what signs do we look for?). Again thank you for your help. It's very difficult dealing with these issues in a foreign country.
Expert:  Nurse Mandy replied 3 years ago.

Hi,

My name isXXXXX you for using Just Answer. It looks like Camille is offline. I am happy to help you with your concern.

You will want to use ice packs on his throat to help decease swelling which will help with pain. You will also want him to sleep on 2-3 pillows to keep his head elevated. This also will help with swelling and prevent bleeding. Look at his throat with a flash light to make sure bleeding is not occurring.

Most of the time a liquid form of acetaminophen (Tylenol) with or without codeine is prescribed. He should be able to return to preschool in 10-14 days depending on his pain level and how fast he heals/feels in some cases they can miss up to 3 weeks of school. Sold food can be started as soon as he feels comfortable. Start slow with Jello, popcyles the day of surgery and work your way towards applesauce, mashed potatoes, ice cream within a day or 2. Drinking fluids is very important and will help with the pain. He should have a follow up appt. 10 days or so after surgery and will be instructed on what other foods he can eat. You want to avoid spicy foods, acidic foods, carbonated beverages and foods with sharp edges (like chips) He may become nauseated or vomit due to the anesthesia, and a lot of times medication will be given at the hospital to help avoid this. Ear aches are common after a tonsillectomy and the pain medication should also help with this. Biggest post op concern is bleeding so make sure he stays calm and quite, drinks plenty of fluids and is careful with what he eats. Bleeding occurs is 1-3% of people. If bleeding happens have him drink ice cold water, rest with head elevated and call the doctor. Usually the bleeding will stop but sometimes the doctor will have to do more surgery to stop the bleeding. You will want to keep an eye on his temperature, a fever greater then 101.5 could indicate an infection is developing. He should be sent home with antibiotics and that will help prevent infection. His throat will develop scabs where the tonsils were so don't be alarmed when you see the back of his throat.

 

I wish him good luck with the surgery and a speedy recovery. If you have any further questions, let me know. Have a good day.

Nurse Mandy, Nurse
Category: Health
Satisfied Customers: 498
Experience: LPN since 2000. Experience in Orthopedics, Dermatology, Cardiology & Ear Nose and Throat
Nurse Mandy and 7 other Health Specialists are ready to help you
Expert:  CamilleRN replied 3 years ago.

 

The biggest post op concern is bleeding… any bleeding is abnormal and you must report this right away. The most commonly prescribed pain mediation after a tonsillectomy is acetaminophen ( Tylenol) with codeine…which can cause nausea in some children. Post op, an upset stomach and vomiting may occur for the first 24 hours after surgery ( ask to have something( Phenergan) on hand for this…(suppositories are available) Earaches are also a problem for some children, you will have pain medication for this. Recovery period is usually 2 weeks before the chi ld can go back to school. Ask your Doctor about his recommendation for this. For the first few days he will not be able to eat solid foods. The following are recommended: apple juice, Popsicles, Jell-O, mashed potatoes and pudding. As he begins to feel better..in a few days… you can begin to introduce foods like scrambled eggs, pasta, mac and cheese.

Fever up to 100.5 is normal for the first 3 days after surgery.. anything higher needs to be reported. Do not give motrin or aspirin before or for 2 weeks after surgery as these can cause bleeding. Here is an article for additional information

TONSILECTOMY

Expert:  CamilleRN replied 3 years ago.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Camille: This is my first time using Just Answer.com. Hopefully what I'm experiencing is not normal. You began to answer my question, then I needed more detail, and someone named "Nurse Mandy" chimed in and provide the detail I wanted, so I paid her. She also said that you were offline. Then you followed-on with another good answer (very similar content to the reply from Nurse Mandy), and you also requested to be paid. I'm sorry but I can't pay twice for recieving the info I requested. All I can suggest at this point is that you find Nurse Mandy and tell her to stop stealing your clients, or take the issue to the folks who run JustAnswer.com. Best regards, Joe Cirvello
Expert:  CamilleRN replied 3 years ago.
Hi Joe, I am sorry she answered while i was preparing your answer. ..and I did not see her answer until I submitted mine. I am really sorry for the confusion it caused you. IF I can help more after surgery, just come back to this question window anytime! :-)

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