Is Outpatient Tonsillectomy Appropriate for Young Children?
The current literature suggests that outpatient tonsillectomy is a safe, cost-effective procedure. These reports have based their conclusions on the low rates of postoperative bleeding and dehydration. Generally, they have not examined other factors that may influence the postoperative course or identified groups of patients in whom outpatient management may not be appropriate. The literature regarding tonsillectomy in young children is conflicting. A retrospective analysis of the records of 223 children, 36 months of age and younger who had tonsillectomies, was performed. Postoperative airway complications including oxygen desaturation and airway obstruction developed in 115 patients. Seventeen (7.6%) children required postoperative care in an intensive care unit while an additional 117 (52.5%) patients received more than standard management. Preoperative apnea, an age of less than 12 months, and the presence of accompanying medical conditions were associated with a higher incidence of postoperative airway complications. It is recommended that tonsillectomy in patients under 36 months of age be planned as an inpatient procedure.
Published In/Presented At
Tom, L. W., DeDio, R. M., Cohen, D. E., Wetmore, R. F., Handler, S. D., & Potsic, W. P. (1992). Is outpatient tonsillectomy appropriate for young children?. The Laryngoscope, 102(3), 277-280.
Medical Sciences | Medicine and Health Sciences | Otolaryngology
Department of Medicine, Department of Medicine Fellows and Residents