Comments on Having Your Tonsils and Adenoids Out as an Adult is a PAIN!" (30 total) View all
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concerned smoker
by concerned26
I am 26 & smoke. I have ALWAYS been sick, to the point where my family thinks i should live in a bubble. Migraine headaches 3-4 a week, and I am prone to getting UTI's & Kidney indfections. I have lumps growing in my Pirotid & salivary glands. Vitamin B12 & D deficient, & dont absorb the pills, so I have to get shots. I have had surgery to remove my gallbladder & still had problems after, so they did an Endiscopy & found ulcers, Esophagitis, & gastroenteritis. I also have had surgery to remove Endometriosis, which is something that grows on your uterus & causes severe pain during your periods. I also have slipped, herniated & bulging discs all over my spine, and problems w my tailbone. Basically i have more health issues than most 50 year olds. My most recent complaint on top of everything else are the problems with my throat CONSTANTLY. Swollen glands, loss of voice, (I sound like a dude), not able to swallow anything, drooling, tiredness, earaches, migraines, loss of appetite, weakness, & of course the junk growing all over the back, and its not strep, I fail the tests everytime. Actually when they swab my throat when I get these infections, I dont even feel them touching it, no gab refelx or anything, but its so unbelievably sore. It got really really bad about a year ago, when my throat closed, and they thought I might have Epiglotitis. Scared the crap out of me. I have probably had 15 throat infections since then, which the doctors can NEVER diagnose, or what i like to call "DIAG-NONSENSE". Recently though my PCP said its time to see the ENT, which I was thankful to get the referral, but felt like i was being dumped on someone else. So I went & he said that my tonsils need to be removed, but I smoke so he wouldnt remove them unless i quit smoking for 6 weeks prior to surgery. Thats fine, give me a surgery date & i'll quit, but then there was the issue with the lump in my piroitd gland, which he seemed more concerned with than my tonsils being so large and inflammed, they were touching, and again it felt like my throat was about to close. I had to have an ultrasound on the gland, which came back slightly abnormal, and now I have to have it checked every 4 months to make sure its not getting bigger or cancerous. If it does, then I have to have a biopsy on it, which btw, can cause partial paralysis in your face. Awesome right? I just want to feel better and not be sick anymore. I dont want anymore health issues or doctors poking at me. So i guess my question to all of you who have had their tonsils removed is, did any of you smoke cigerettes? I have been smoking for 15 years, so its not something that will happen over night & it takes forever to get a surgery date. I just want to make sure that if i go through hell of having my tonsils removed that its not going to be harder for me because I have smoked for so long, or should I just find another ENT who WILL take them out now? I too have zero tolerence for pain, I have 2 kids and got the epidural with both kids, and both times it failed & ended up having natural childbirth. Felt everything. It was awful and they kept asking me to stop screaming because I was scaring the other patients! When i was having gall bladder attacks, they put me in the Psych ward of the ER because again I was screaming so much i was scaring the other patients. When i cracked my head open and needed 4 staples & 3 stitches, they put someone in the same room with me, and they walked out of the hopsital because I was screaming. I think the point im trying to make is me and pain dont mix, and if i'm in pain, i'm going to be screaming! I am so nervous about having them taken out, but at the same time, I dont EVER want to go through the scariness of having my throat close and not being able to breathe, or the agony i experience when i get the infections, so is quitting smoking & this pain going to be worth it? Did i also mention that i'm allergic to penicillin & Z-packs, and have taken bactrum so many times in the past year that i'm immune to it now? It literally no longer fights any innfection. I'm rambling at this point, but any suggestions anyone might have please let me know.
Nov 13, 2011
7:55 pm PST

im so scared
by missyapsa
Hi... Thank u 4 this amazing article and 4 all t comments guys. Was awesome to read. I am 20 years old n have t same tonsilitis problem and adenoids as well. Well in t past 3 weeks I hav been to t doc like 6 times. Anyway I went to t ENT n he booked me for t op in 2 days time.. He needs to shrink them 1st. Ok I taught it wasn't such a big deal. But after reading your article I'm freaking scared. Is all t pain worthit being removed? Please help! I don't wanna make a mistake...
Oct 27, 2011
7:47 pm PDT

Many different procedures
by mattsgirlhaley
As I was reading all of the comments listed here I noticed that there were several people who made the statement that they were fine afterward and it was because of their pain threshold. I could not see how there was so much of a discrepancy and I investigated. This link says that there are eight different procedures for removing the tonsils. Some cause less pain, some cause a lot more. Discuss with your doctor which procedure will be used and that will also give you some insight into what to expect.
I need to go to my ENT and face the music. It is time for mine to take a hike. My story is exactly like most on here, so I will not go into detail. I also wanted to say thanks to the writer of this article! It gave a very real account of what to expect I am afraid!
Sep 2, 2011
10:54 pm PDT

by wardz123
hey thanx for posting this im alex and im currently 19 years old and i just learnt today im having my tonsils out in about 2 months and im really worried people have told me how painfull it is and how it will really change your life by how you eat and sleep ect i am so scared about having it done but i know it will be better in the long run and will help me in the future so once again thank you for posting this because now i know what sort of things to expect
yours sincerly
Alex Ward
England xxxx
Aug 17, 2011
7:08 am PDT

by flawlessgems
TOday is Monday.I have been suffering from tonsilitis for the past 3yrs.This yr(2011)I believe is the worst for me.This time around i have it for 6days.I have it so badly that my eyes,both ears,chest, lungs, throat and head hurts.My throat;so much that to swallow ANYTHING is almost impossible.Just as I got I lost 7lbs. My pains are indiscribible.My doctor told me my only option now is to have it remove but I am afraid.So I've been online doing research trying to get some insite as to what do.I hope I make the right decision because I can't wait for this to be over.
May 30, 2011
1:19 pm PDT

Tonsils and Adenoids taken out at age 35
by thik4sho

I had my tonsils and adenoids taken out five years ago when I was 35 years old. The surgery was done on a Friday, April 1st, which happened to be April Fools Day. Anyways, the surgery and the recovery went well, so I was hoping that the procedure would be an inpatient/outpatient but as it turned out; my blood pressure began to rise while I was in the recovery room so I had to spend the night in the hospital. I was dismissed on Saturday April 2nd and I was back at work on Monday, April 11th. I was a little scared before having the surgery, but looking back I am glad I did.
May 27, 2011
5:46 am PDT

I have large tonsils...
by babylynn
I dont know what to do i am afraid of goin to the doctors and Im afraid of the recovery sounds like hell...i really dont want to go through that... =(
Feb 18, 2011
2:14 pm PST

Remove your tonsils before 10
by airbugs
Annecal, thanks for the enlightenment, I am 56 years old and on day 10 after having my tonsils and adenoids removed. I had finally had enough due to constant bouts (every 45 days) of Strep and I too had to find a doctor who I could convince (threaten) to perform the procedure. I agree that the younger the better and get those nasty things removed as a child. Your comparison of swallowing ground glass is close to what I felt like except that I would add that my eardrums also felt as it someone was piercing them with ice picks every time I tried to swallow.
I found that heavily drugged and sleeping was the best way to spend the first week and have a vaporizer running on high within a couple feet of your face to keep from drying out while you are dreaming of eating solid food again someday.
This surgery makes you appreciate the little things in life, like breathing, swallowing and even talking without tears welling up in your eyes.
So, all of you mom's and dad's out there, if a doctor suggests your kid should have their tonsils out, please do not hesitate for one it!!!!
Feb 7, 2011
8:27 am PST

could you tell me plz.......
by misstaz
Hi, Thks for your story...((By the way your family sounds awesome)) i was wondering.... i am a 44 yr old female and i have had trouble with my tonsils since childhood...this past year 2010 tonsillitis 6 times in 8 months sometimes having to take 2 rounds of antibiotics. i went today to a ((ENT)) today that i really was very comfortable with ...he was brutally honest though and told me that War war 3 Iraq and Iran doesn't have nothing pain wise to what i will go through...i am a chronic pain patient due to my back being completely broken in half and 2 back surgery's and 16 steel rods later i am on high powered medicine...he said he would probably have to give me boat loads of dilaudid, but without a doubt they need to come out....i have slept in a recliner for the past 4 yrs because i cannot lay flat and i am very worried about the pain i guess my question to you is just how painful was it!!!! the doctor is letting me think about it, he told me to go online and read some forums about adult's getting there tonsils taken out. i just want to understand how pinful it is....thanks for your time.
Jan 21, 2011
1:50 pm PST

6 more days before my toncils are out!! :~(((
by jackie3horse
Thank you for writing the email,about taking your toncil's out as a adult.I am scared to death.I am 49 years old,and I have been going to doctor after any event,,I went to the 2nd to the last doc,and he looked in my mouth and said,oh you have enfection,gave me antibodys and sent me on my way.I took them for a week,and than I said to my self ,there is something wrong,I could not swallow,felt sick,on and on. So I self Diagnosi myself,took a flash light ,look in my mouth,and could not beleive what I saw,and could not beleive he the Doctor did not see it as well.A big MASS on my toncil.Well than I call,and demanded he give me a referal to a troat doc. he did.and sure as could be..( cancer). So now we have to remove them and go from there.I have been going through this for 2 years now.and now it's in GODs Hands.And 10 days of pain.Thank you again for writing the pain toncil letter.Everyone says it's no big deal,blah ,blah...Thanks for letting me vent. J.S.
Nov 26, 2010
9:22 am PST

by josettej2000




Nov 5, 2010
9:27 pm PDT

Agreed it is a pain!
by jmllr
M daughter had her tonsils out in December at age 18. She didn't get sick often but when she did it was always in her tonsils and she would have extreme pain and difficulty swallowing. She was difficult to understand when she would talk, very muffled. After the last bout of tonsillitis she developed a loud snore/gargle at night and had difficulty swallowing food. She often was tired and this was due to poor sleep due to snoring. I knew she had to get them out before she went off to college when she would be more prone to becoming sick. After the surgery the doctor told me that they were the largest set of tonsils he has ever removed from a woman and he has been doing this for 20 years. He reassured me that this was necessary and it will be worth it. Her recovery was as listed by others, very very painful. I took off of work for a week to be with her 24/7 and it wasn't fun! I set her alarm for every 4 hours and we would give her liquid percocet around the clock. The key is to stay on top of the pain before it has a chance to increase. Swallowing is also key to recovery. As painful as it is, it helps the muscle heal. I was constantly on her to have popscicles and anything else she could tollerate but it is hard due to the fact the you really have no appetite and it plain hurts to eat. Just when you think you can start weaning off the drugs you get to day 7 when the scab falls off. It is back to pain meds every 4 hours. She was back in school 10 days post op and feeling almost herself. It has been 7 months and looking back it was WORTH it! She sounds so much clearer in her speech, hasn't been sick 1 day since and her sleep is snore-free and better quality. When you have tonsils such as described in these posts they need to come out because they are not functioning and are making you sick! Good luck, the sooner the better!
Jul 21, 2010
8:01 am PDT

by lburns21
I am scheduled to have my tonsils removed, and possible adeniods out (I am 22) and am now scared out of my mind. I have had 7 cases of strep/tonsillitis, always tired, ear aches, and also obstructive sleep apnea which results in severe migraines in the morning and sometimes through-out the day. Ugh.. I work in customer service and am only able to have a week off. I have a feeling this is going to suck.
Jul 9, 2010
10:05 pm PDT

Would you suggest?
by eliralena
I'm sure it's been a while since you had your tonsils removed. Would you suggest that with a person like me... I get sick 2 or 3 times a year with a cold or flu and my tonsils swell up from it... And stay swollen a week to 2 weeks after I get over the cold... Then when I get upset I get a slightly soar throat and again my tonsils swell up for about a week to 2 weeks. Do you think I should rmove them?
May 4, 2010
2:53 pm PDT

i agree.
by bnfbrittney
I'm 15 and i just had my tonsils took out the 16th of February and this is my second week. I've stayed out of school. and this is the first time I've been able to even try to eat anything but my breath is horrible is there anything i can do to make the scabs go away faster.? i still am taking my pain medications and amoxicillon when i wake up it hurts terribly. and every time i try to swallow or eat anything it send very sharp pains to my ears that feel like pain i can't even describe. i do not remember the surgery at all. and the thing that hangs down in my throat was very swollen for about a week. i also had my adenoids removed but my nose didn't ever hurt other than the day of the surgery blood was coming out of my nose and throat. i feel like i'm starving right now but i still am not able to eat any solids and it hurts to drink.
Feb 26, 2010
11:17 am PST

Pain, to say the Least!!!
by leahec
I am a 27 year old working, single, mother of two and just recenently (8 days ago), had my tonsils and adenoids removed, along with having a turbinate reduction on the left and right side of my nose. This by far, has been the most painful surgery I've ever experienced! My ENT (ear, nose, and throat specialist), had explained before the procedure that the results would be very worhtwhile, but I would need to endure quite a bit of pain before seeing the positive outcome. HOLY SMOKES!!!! I never, ever, anticipated the pain being so horrific! I know exactly what you went through and just keep telling myself to hang in there. My parents, who the kids and I are staying with while I'm recovering, have been completely baffled, walking around with confused expressions on their faces. All this, until we began researching topics about the severity of pain with this procedure. I think they now understand why I've been in so much pain, and so sick, exhausted, irritable, hungry, and emotional. This is not a surgery for adults! I thank you for sharing your experience. Not only did it help my family understand, (to an extent), what I'm going through, but it also has kept me from becoming too discouraged.
Jan 13, 2010
8:54 pm PST

Re: thank you
by elousie
i'm 18 too. i've always had large tonsils and just recently the right on has been swollen and its very painful to swallow. my voice sounds very strange like there's something stuck in my throat. my dr. is very unhelpful and unable to diagnose what i have...i think it will probably be best to get them taken out. was your surgery very painful? all of these other people are a bit older so i was wondering if 18 still counted as early and therefore a less painful time to get them taken out.
Jan 13, 2010
10:26 am PST

about to have this done soon
by donnieii
Thanx for the truthful article. The ENT department at the VA in chicago has been screwing me around and around about my adenoids and tonsils. When they first saw my adenoids were swollen and ears were hurting real bad, their first response was to send me and my wife of 30 years for an hiv/aids test, because "adenoids only swell up in men when they have been exposed to hiv." Needless to say, we were both negative, and then the ENT department wanted to do biopsies and all other kinds of crap before I ended up seeing an outside physician who told me that my adenoids and tonsils probably need to be removed. Your article helped me to see that I have similar symptoms as others who commented on your piece, and how they coped with it. Now its back to the VA for me, hopefully to find new personnel in the ENT department (they rotate out every 4 months, its a teaching hospital) who can address my needs and safely perform this surgery. Thanx again!
Jun 25, 2009
11:22 am PDT

by kag65
I am a 43 year old female tomorrow will be one week since I had my tonsila and adnoids removed, I have had a couple of back surgerys, where they have pins and rods in my back and I honestly think this tonsil think has been worse on me, My doctor gave me hydrocodine, throat numbing spray and liquid antibiotic. All this does help coz I can tell when the pain pills are wearing off, but I am in constant pain, my throat, my tonge, my cheek bones and my ears, when I try to get sleep as soon as I doze off, I get choked and start coughing and it feels like I am having my throat ripped out, oh yea, I also have almost a constant headache. this is day 6 and I have already cried a couple times today, I wish I would have never had this done, the reason I went thru with this is because my ENT doc said one of my tonsils was 3 times bigger than the other and he was afraid it might be cancer, my grandma had to have her voice box removed because of cancer, anyway does anyone know how long this agnizing pain is going to last, I am losing weight like crazy, I can't even eat runny mashed potatoes without giving up coz my throat feels like its on fire, the hospital called and said it would be 3 to 4 weeks. This is just umbearable. I am living on ice water and watermelon.
Jun 24, 2009
12:03 pm PDT

by dinaioma05
Hi,everyone!!! I just need some advise of the tonsils surgery.My daughter had her's at only 4yrs old.I'm 28 and im getting sick all the time.Im tired of all the Z-packs and antibiotics.My doctor reffered me to a ENT for examination.He said that probably i need my tonsils to be removed.I had this problems since i was 16yrs.But, i didn't took them off because i sing and i was so scared if i couldn't sing back AGAIN!!!! But, now im going for it.Im a little bit scared, because they told me that is harder now that when i was younger.CAN SOMEBODY PLEASE HELP ME????
Jun 9, 2009
8:57 pm PDT

Re: Re: My tonsils are gone and I'm very very pleased
by thumpergal
Thank you for the good thoughts about this surgery. I have had reoccuring bouts of fever, sore throats, infection, etc. for the last year. My quality of life has taken a dramatic turn for the worse...I don't want to do anything because I feel so bad most of the time. I will be going to see an ENT in Little Rock, AR next week for a second opionion (the one in Pine Bluff seems to think I need the tonsils to come out, just want a second opinion). I know I will hurt for a while after surgery, but if that is what it takes for me to get my quality of life back, then so be it. Thank you again.
Jun 2, 2009
6:36 am PDT

thank you
by flapperfntc
thank you. you're article has just proved to my family that i'm not overreacting about the pain. i'm 18 and just got my tonsils out but it hurts none the less. thank you
Apr 15, 2009
5:18 am PDT

thanks for botherin
by tarletonroofin
Well done for taking the time to write this articall. My son has just had his taken out a week ago, and i was starting to wonder if things were going acording to plan.This article eased my mind and his!!

Excellent....well done
Nov 18, 2008
12:38 pm PST

Re: Re: Re: Tonsils out as an adult
by slane21
I am 34yo female who just had the surgery on Aug 15,08 and I can say that after reading the stories on here we are very different but have the same problems... It is still week 1 for me and it has been really horrible I have a high tolerance for pain, but this pain gosh has been really really hard on me I have lost 11 lbs in a week cause its been really hard to eat or drink the first couple of days I was ok taking a lot of darvocet day 5 and 6 I have barely been able to eat or drink I feel as though I have some soars all over the back of my tongue that I can't see, but when I do drink water or eat soup it burns really bad so I would rather not even deal with it at all... I am drinking water this morning I am also feeling like the left side of my tonsil and tongue are on fire I have called the Dr.s office for I do go to the Dr. in the afternoon on Fri. She has called me some lidocane which numbs the entire mouth for a few swish it around and swallow it if you can hack it...I will say the only thing I have been able to drink or eat in the last 3 days is coffee from starbucks and banana nut loaf from there as well it goes down smooth.. The way that I feel and the pain that I have gone through I would say as an adult deal with the soar throats, But on the other hand when or how ever its gonna take me to heal I am sure that I am glad I had this done...But Beware as an adult it is soo much different then your kids...My 13yo had hers done in March and was feeling better by the 5th day!!! Our bodies are so much different so each person will deal with it the best they can, It does help if you have a good support spouse or friend..
Aug 21, 2008
11:04 am PDT

Re: Re: Tonsils out as an adult
by mikecamero
thank you very much for sharing your story.
One more concern I had before considering the operation was whether loosing your first line of defense (tonsils) made your body more vulnerable to getting sick, ie. more colds?
How has it been for you?
Aug 2, 2008
8:22 am PDT

Re: My tonsils are gone and I'm very very pleased
by hollycgate
I forgot to mention in my review about my tongue. I too on day two I think, had a horrible sore tongue! I had to keep it away from my teeth. I have an auto-immune disease so I get tongue sores, so I didnt know if it was from a flare-up or from the surgery. It took until today for it to ease up. I had my surgery four days ago.
Jul 5, 2008
7:16 pm PDT

Outcome of having tonsils removed as adult depends on the person
by hollycgate
I am 33 and just had my tonsils taken out this past Tuesday. I heard horror stories and even read the story on here. I had fear for days! While in the prep room, the nurse I had said she was 30 when hers were taken out, which was 4 years ago. She said she was eating turkey and dressing three days later and it was not as bad as everyone wants you to believe. So that gave me a little hope. When I woke up, the thing that hurt the worst was my ears! It wasn't an unbearable pain and neither was my throat. I told her my ears were hurting more so than my throat and she gave me one more shot of pain meds. I was gone 30 minutes later. The pain was like that from when I had strep throat for three weeks straight. So this was nothing! It did not hurt unless I swallowed. Then, I would drink ice water or ice tea. I did find that icecream really sucks to eat after your tonsils are removed. Sounds crazy I know, but, it leaves this thick coating on the back of your throat which makes you struggle to try and clear it. That little thing that hangs down DOES SWELL. I thought I had a wad of snot stuck but looked in my throat and there the huge thing hung! So it feels like you need to suck something down, but you can not. I finally just told myself not to even try and just breath through my nose. I can not lie flat of my back cuz that thing falls to the back of my throat and I can not breath. So I lay on my side to sleep. I ate chicken noodle soup that same day with no problem at all. Popsicles help a lot when it starts to hurt too much. The pain med I think hurt the worst cuz it taste like straight alcohol burning your throat! But it takes all the discomfort away. I was up and doing light housework the next day. I don't mean mopping floors or cooking dinner. I put on clothes to wash, and hung some up and loaded the dishwasher. But I have not been confined to a bed in horrible misery with slime oozing out of my mouth. I can not feel anything in the back of my throat like nasty stuff other than that stupid swollen thing hanging down. The one time it hurt bad enough that I shook was the other night, I strangled on drool in my sleep. Before I could wake up, I coughed really hard like normal and when I came to, it hurt like crazy from the coughing! I took some pain med and got a popsicle and went and sat in a hot bath! Went away in no time. I think this surgery really depends on the pain tolerance of the person. If you know that you can not handle pain, injuries, or other things that cause you discomfort very well, then you will not handle this very well. I set it in my mind before hand that I would not let it confine me. I have found methods of getting my mind off of it when it does hurt. Just take your pain med on a regular basis and eat things like soup, soft baked potato, mashed potatos, and definetly popsicles. Drink plenty of water or tea to keep hydrated. If you get dehydrated, the pain in your throat will get worse. I think that is also where a lot of people mess up. They get afraid to drink cuz of the pain and get dehydrated. A simple scratch will hurt like a serious cut if you are dehydrated. But each person is different when it comes to surgery. You will probably know which one you are before you ever have the surgery.
Good luck to anyone that has it!
Jul 5, 2008
7:12 pm PDT

Re: so should i fight for my daughter?
by karissabell32
my daughter is having hers taking out July 23,2008 i will be so happy she has had 6 cases in the past 3 months . my son had his taken out Dec. of last year and he has not had a problem since than my daughter is 12 years old & my son is 11 years old if she is having problems like this now it's only going to get worst.
Jun 16, 2008
8:45 pm PDT

Re: My tonsils are gone and I'm very very pleased
by bethburton
Well I can only pray that they elect to remove mine. Pain or no pain, I can't take any more of this on again off again illness and loss of just the standard care of living...

You guys are an encouragement. Anyone from Arkansas?

Jan 2, 2008
9:25 pm PST

Having my tonsils removed
by bethburton
Thank you for your article. I felt as though I was reading a mirror image of my world. You gave me hope. I have an appointment tomorrow with a doctor because I too am having troubles like you describe. I have had this last bout for the last 3 weeks. It has caused me to miss out on holidays with my family, lost time from work, my son's birthday is today and we had to cancel his party because "I am not up to it"...but everyone acts as if I'm crazy. Last year the pain in my neck was so severe at 3 a.m. I went to the ER and they treated me as if I were a drug seeking person...and tried to explain it away with 'you need to lose weight' and all I wanted was for someone to listen to me and find out what was wrong. 2 months later they found I had a pocket of infection behind my left tonsil and lymph node in my neck. But since I was nearly over was, once again, just passed off as "just another throat infection!"

This is totally effecting my life. My husband has to sleep in the next room because I'm up and down all night, coughing, hacking, being restless and hurting.

My friend was married on New Year's ... I had to tell her I couldn't go because "I'm sick..." and got the usual response "AGAIN?" That really hurts... makes me feel like a total loser...once again, have let yet another person down because once again, I'm plagued with illness.

I have been to the doctor 4 times in 3 weeks! Had steroid shots, z-packs, antibiotics (Pills & shots)...cough suppressents and still, I lay here upset, sick and hurting...

I can only hope this ENT tomorrow listens and will pull these's all got to be worth it once you are done with it...Im 42 and am determined to get well and stay that way...

This stuff is making me crazy..I feel as though I'm losing my mind and no one else sees or knows what's going on but me....

Thanks again for your up front information...

Jan 2, 2008
9:15 pm PST
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