This is my third tonsil infection in six months. Actually I think my second infection never cleared up all the way even though I took all my antibiotics, and this is just a continuation of that.
When I was young the doctor told my mom that I needed to have my tonsils taken out, but she never did. They weren’t infected or anything, they’re just huge. I’ve never had problems with my tonsils until I moved to Arkansas and started having a lot of sinus trouble. To be nice and gross they look like marbled meat. You know, when you’re trying to select a choice piece of roast and the meat is marbled with fat? That’s what my tonsils look like, except it’s pus.
You’re welcome for that mental image.
Anyway, I know the inevitable removal of my tonsils is necessary, but damn it makes me nervous. I don’t do well with needles so I can’t imagine having surgery.
I’m being a wimp I know.
I wouldn’t describe the recovery as “pure hell”. Maybe the first hour or two trying to come out of the anesthesia, but you’re pretty groggy during that time, anyway, so it’s not that bad.
I had mine removed when I was 19, and each was the size of a golf ball. I’m assuming you’re in a similar situation? Trust me, if that’s the case, the recovery was more than worth the not always being infected. I stopped snoring, and even (IMHO) became a better athlete because I could breathe better.
I’ve kept mine. For years on end they used to do what you’re talking about once a year without fail, and then out of the blue I went seventeen years without an episode, despite being exposed to a virulent case my girlfriend had. Until May '05 I thought I was over it for good, and then it came back to haunt me less than a week before I was due to sing at my niece’s wedding. It cleared up about twelve hours in time.
Due sympathies. It’s lovely not even being able to swallow water without feeling like you’ve been gargling razor blade soup, isn’t it?
I need to have mine removed too as I’m ALWAYS sick and tonsils looking the way you describe is just…ugh. I guess I’ll cowboy up soon and have it done—should have had them taken out when I was a kid but my folks were told “don’t get them taken out, they’re germ catchers.” Oh yeah, are they
I had mine taken out when I was 9. I was always getting tonsilitis and it snored louder than my dad. It turned out that they were three times bigger than they were supposed to be, too.
As a nine year old, the surgery definitely sucked. I was out for two weeks. At the time, all of the ice cream and jello I could eat* was not worth it to me. But it was definitely worth it in the long run; my snoring was gone, no more tonsilitis, and I never have to worry about getting those infamous tonsil stones I always hear about. It will feel like you just gargled a cheese grater for a while but that was the worst of it. If you have the option, I’d say go for it.
*Lies! Don’t believe the crafty grownups. And be sure to ask them “Will it hurt AFTER I get my tonsils out?”, not “Does getting my tonsils taken out hurt?”
I don’t see how getting tonsils out is painful at all… I got 'em out a couple years ago, due to sleep apnea, talked weird for a couple days and hacked up copious amounts of phelgm, but it wasn’t really painful…
Having your tonsils out as an adult can be a pretty serious surgery and is much more risky than having them out as a child. That said, I had mine out 3 years ago as part of 4 surgeries at the same time. It hurt but it wasn’t unbearable. I couldn’t really eat for close to a week and I lost some weight but it wasn’t as bad as the doctor warned.
I had mine out when I was 15, which is on the old side for tonsillectomies. The recovery was horrible, but my health has improved like a gagillion percent. I was sick all the time. Now, I can’t remember the last time I had a sore throat. It’s been decades.
I had mine out when I was 8, about 30 odd years ago. I think I went home that same day after the surgery, and except for a sore throat for a few days, I was fine.
Suck it up and get the surgery. You’re letting fear stand in the way of your health, and that’s silly. We’re not talking about leeches and trepanning here, it’s a simple surgery, and you have an excuse to eat ice cream.
Like I said earlier, tonsillectomies aren’t the same thing in children versus adults. Children have a sore throat for a few days and eat ice cream. Adults may need to arrange up to two weeks away from work and household responsibilities plus significant weight loss. It doesn’t have to be that way but it can be. I had four surgeries at once but I thank my surgeon for counselling me on how this could be the most pain I had to go through in my lifetime. I didn’t that that it was that horrible but that was mainly because of the Oxycontin and expectations of pain raised so high that they couldn’t possibly be met.
I would definitely do it again and I think my adult tonsillectomy had some great health benefits but anyone that is conveying stories about tonsillectomies as a child is talking Gorgonzola cheese when it is clearly Brie time. My mother travelled 2000 miles to be with me and help take care of my daughter for a week and it was definitely needed. Doctors take tonsillectomies in adults seriously.
My sister had to have hers out as an emergency procedure when she was a teenager because the infection started to spread – she’d had tonsillitis frequently before that but not been recommended for an 'ectomy. I am told it is easier to recover if you don’t have a serious infection at the time of surgery.
My experience has been that surgery in general is not as bad as I’d expected, though it helps a huge amount to have good doctors and nurses, the kind who really listen when they ask you how you feel, etc.
Hmm…some of these replies aren’t helping my fear! I’m kidding. Sorta. I know I need to stop being a wimp but it all just makes me nervous. I’ve pretty much decided I’m going to do it after the holidays, and when we get enough employees. Right now we are so short handed that people from other units have to come work at ours.
The sick time isn’t really a problem. I never call in sick so I have about 4 weeks right now. I’m just tired of the sore throats and I always have this weird burning feeling in my throat. Like if I eat chocolate it burns my throat. Sometimes water does. It hurts when I swallow, it makes my ears hurt. I snore, I have a hard time breathing at times because my tonsils are gigantic normally anyway.
I’m 27, so I know it’s going to suck. It’ll be easier on me because I don’t have kids to run after or anything like that. I’m still scared. A girl at my job had hers taken out last year and coughed up stitches for days. I’m not going to that doctor. The only saving grace in all this right now is that I didn’t have to spend $20 to see my regular doctor just to have him peek in my mouth and prescribe antibiotics. I had a nurse practitioner look at them and she got the doctor that comes once a week to prescribe some meds for me .
Since I had mine out at age 9, I can’t speak to the whole adult v child recovery issue, but I will say my health improved DRASTICALLY after I had my tonsils out.
Before, I was sick almost every week with strep, bronchitis, stomach viruses and also huge canker sores. After, I had perfect health – no throwing up, no strep, no sniffles, and oddest of all, no canker sores. I have not had a canker sore since then. I’ve had strep just once (ah the joys of barracks living in the military), but really truly nothing to speak of since then.
My tonsils were nothing but a giant indiscriminate petri dish for germs and I am very thankful they are long gone.
Totally bare advice: nurse practitioner, doc, whoever you encounter: look 'em in the eye and ask the questions you really want answers to. Nearly all medical professionals would like to give you good information, and nearly all the good information will help you feel better. Really.
And surgery of any kind is not what you’d schedule voluntarily (in lieu of a walk on the beach, for instance, or a movie), but it’s also nowhere near as bad as you think it could be! I’d even guess that your medical professionals will be happy to be giving you the tonsilectomy, as they probably know their way backwards and forwards through the procedure, and will be delighted to have a patient they are 99.9999% sure will be healthier upon leaving.
IANA medical anything, BTW. But from my totally patient-oriented experience, I am not worried. Go out ye and divest thyself of odious and malfeasant throatal structures!