Radiofrequency-tonsillotomy: Effective method for treating children with enlarged tonsils

New research released at world's largest ENT meeting

Radiofrequency-tonsillotomy, which enables surgeons to reduce the size of the tonsillar tissue instead of removing the tonsils entirely, seems to be an effective and safe method of treating children with symptoms of enlarged tonsils.

In a paper presented at the 2009 American Academy of Otolaryngology - Head and Neck Surgery Foundation (AAO-HNSF) Annual Meeting & OTO EXPO in San Diego, researchers investigated 167 children (under 15 years old) who had undergone radiofrequency surgery for symptoms of tonsillar hypertrophy (snoring, nocturnal sleep apnea, dysphagia, or speech impairment).

The post-operative follow-up, done two to 26 months after surgery, showed no history of recurrent tonsillitis. Complete or definite improvement regarding the pre-operative symptoms of tonsillar hypertrophy was obtained in more than 91 percent of the children.

In the past, children with symptoms of tonsillar hypertrophy have usually been treated with tonsillectomy. Such surgery is a relatively common and safe procedure, but complications can include post-operative bleeding and infection. The radiofrequency-tonsillotomy method causes less pain and allows more rapid recovery.

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