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  • Loss of Taste After Tonsillectomy

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    Old 11-21-2006, 04:21 AM   #31
    Cyberg
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    Re: Loss of Taste After Tonsillectomy

    Some on-line research I've done suggests that there is a possibility of damage to the Lingual Branch of the Glossopharyngeal Nerve, particularly in patients with significant scar or fibrous tissue in the tonsillar bed.
    I fear that as a 52 year old with a long history of tonsil infections this may be a decription of my condition.

    if you're interested, here is the link to one of the papers covering the subject.
    It's a little technical, but certainly the facts jump out. It won't appear here as a link, so you'll need to copy and paste into your browser.

    [url]http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/entrez/query.fcgi?itool=abstractplus&db=pubmed& cmd=Retrieve&dopt=abstractplus&list_uids =12816225[/url]
    If it doesn't work, just google "Tonsillectomy and Taste disturbance", you'll find it and more.

    most worrisome is some indications that it may be reversible in the 2 year period afterwards, but in some cases may be irreversible. The numbers indicate that this is fairly rare however, so being hopeful is a reasonable path.

    I'm hanging in there and hoping for the best, you all do the same, and report back positive progress OK?

    p.s. I'm discovering lots of good soups though. Cambells Healthy Request Chicken and Sausage Gumbo is one of those few things that still manage to taste pretty good.

    Last edited by Cyberg; 11-21-2006 at 04:24 AM.

     
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    Old 11-21-2006, 07:23 AM   #32
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    Re: Loss of Taste After Tonsillectomy

    This is encouraging:

    From:
    Review Article
    "Re-establishment of olfactory and taste functions : an overview of available therapies"

    Taste disorders after tonsillectomy caused by pressure on the lingual branch of the glossopharyngeal nerve are rare (0.31%) and commonly disappear spontaneously”


    That's the kind of numbers I was looking for, less than 3 tenths of a percent and commonly disappear!!!!!!!

    full text, if you're interested, is at:

    [url]http://www.egms.de/en/journals/cto/2005-4/cto000012.shtml[/url]

     
    Old 11-25-2006, 09:03 AM   #33
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    Re: Loss of Taste After Tonsillectomy

    It was exciting to read Cyberg's findings about the taste spontaniously returning. That would be so exciting! Unfortunately, things are tasting even worse for me lately. Now, I can barely drink my coffee and even water tastes odd!! My vanilla slim-fast has been my only true healthy thing I've been eating every day and now even that is tasting rather gross, instead of like nothing. But, I found out yesterday that I'm pregnant, so maybe that explains why things are even worse. I'm quite worried about being able to eat enough to feed this baby when I can hardly eat enough to keep me alive!! I can't wait for the day when I can write and say that my taste has returned!

    Signed,
    9kids
    (soon to be 10kids!)

     
    Old 12-07-2006, 07:12 AM   #34
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    Re: Loss of Taste After Tonsillectomy

    Well, unfortunately, things have only gotten worse for me. Now I seem to have that horrible metallic or buttery taste in the back of my throat that others have complained of. I don't know if I would describe it as that exactly, but it's all in a matter of perspective and I'm sure we are experiencing the same thing. It's a difficult thing to describe, so maybe metallic or buttery would work. And the pregnancy is making me very hungry all the time and it's extremely frustrating, as I can't seem to find enough things I can eat. This is so hard for me and I find that I am really losing patience and am beginning to worry that it might take one to two years after all. That just seems so long! Better than forever, though. I can't even bear to think that that might be possible! Even water tastes horrible these days! Water!!! Has anyone else noticed this? Every day I check this forum with hopes that someone has completely recovered. I need hope!!!

     
    Old 12-13-2006, 03:37 AM   #35
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    Numb tongue After Tonsillectomy

    day 26 after my surgery. half of my tongue is still really numb. i have loss of taste especially in salty things and coke/soda etc. but it is the numbness that really worries me. doc says it is normal. but doesnt explain much. anybody with this problem?

    Last edited by penguen; 12-13-2006 at 03:38 AM.

     
    Old 12-18-2006, 04:17 AM   #36
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    Re: Loss of Taste After Tonsillectomy

    Hi all,

    I had my tonsils out a little over a year and eight months ago. I posted here for a while after my tonsillectomy but I have not posted here in a long time. Just wanted to give those of you that have recently had surgeries an update from someone that had theirs out a long time ago. I suffered a severe loss of taste afterwards. It started out where everything tasted metallic to the point I almost could not eat most things. It gradually improved somewhat to where I don't have the metallic taste anymore, but not very much regular taste. As I said, it has been over a year and a half now and my sense of taste has not returned to anything near what it used to be.

    Some days are better than others and some things taste better than others. I cannot taste sweets very well so chocolate and soda are ruined for me. I can taste salty things better than unsalted things but I was not a big salty food eater before so it doesn't appeal to me much now either.

    I've pretty much just given up and gotten used to it. I've unintentionally lost a lot of weight and still don't enjoy eating food as much as I used to. I went to my ENT several times after the surgery and he just kept telling me to be patient and allow for more healing. Well, my 2 years are almost up and I am afraid I am going to be one of the ones where this is permanent.

    I wish you all well in your recoveries and I am sure this will not be long-term for most of you. Even given the fact I cannot taste things normally I would still have the tonsillectomy all over again. The recovery period was horrible but I was so sick before it I have to say my overall health has greatly improved.

    Speedy recoveries and happy holidays to everyone

    Last edited by Ariane05; 12-18-2006 at 04:42 AM.

     
    Old 12-20-2006, 08:58 PM   #37
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    Re: Loss of Taste After Tonsillectomy

    Thank you for the update on your taste loss. Although it's scary to hear of someone not fully recovering after so long, it's always nice to hear the outcome. It is disheartening, but it makes me accept the fact that this is definately a possibility for myself, also. It's been almost three months for me, with no improvement. That feels so long! I can't imagine dealing with this for as long as you have! I'm so, so sorry!!! Promise me that you will let us all know if you ever receive your taste back. It would be the best news!!! Good luck!

     
    Old 01-15-2007, 07:10 PM   #38
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    Re: Loss of Taste After Tonsillectomy

    Hey 2catfans and Harlee! Where are you guys??? Did you ever recover from your taste loss?? You both really seemed to be experiencing the same things I am and I would really like to hear if either of you have some good news for the rest of us. Cyberg and I are still suffering. Even if you still have taste loss, I need to know about that also! Please write!!!

     
    Old 01-26-2007, 03:34 PM   #39
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    Re: Loss of Taste After Tonsillectomy

    ok, day 21 for me. everything tastes crappy. I've lost over 20 pounds since operation. no sweet tastes, or very very little. coffee tastes evil. I had on complication from tonsillectomy.. my throat had swollen so badly on day 6 that not including pain, it was physically impossible to swallow, including my own saliva. I was hospitilazied, put on fluids, morphine, anti-inflammitories and more antibiotics. I am almost healed. a little soreness when swallowing. It constantly tastes like I'm sucking on aluminum. I've gotten used to drinking distilled water. even tap water tastes bad. I WILL keep updating on this board. on an every few week basis. planning on having boyfriend help me chart where my taste is lost. as in flavors/areas. still trying to find a relatively reliable way to do it. I'm sure there's some elementary school thingy for it. I vaguely remember doing something similar in school. Swallowing feels wrong. like throat while not hurting all that bad is still very sensitive...possibly extra sensitivity to pressure so making things seem bigger than they are? not sure either... just thinking in text. reply with ideas, guesses... please!

     
    Old 01-26-2007, 08:48 PM   #40
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    Re: Loss of Taste After Tonsillectomy

    I, too, have had some loss of taste. I'm on day 16, post op. It seems like things just taste really dull and just off. And I do feel like I have more bitter taste than sweet or sour. I also sometimes get a slight metallic taste in my mouth. It's like my taste buds were brushed away.

    I forgot to mention it to my ENT on my two week visit because of some other more pressing questions (ie, terrible neck pain and head aches). From reading these posts, it seems pretty common. However, if I don't get my full taste back in a few more weeks, I'm definitely going to talk to her about it.

     
    Old 01-27-2007, 05:35 PM   #41
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    Re: Loss of Taste After Tonsillectomy

    Well, I'm three and a half months post-op now and am having VERY slight improvements, I think. Food is now more enjoyable and it seems like I have gained some improvement in tasting flavors and spices, etc. I still don't really know if I've just gotten used to it somewhat and am forgetting what things are supposed to taste like, or if I really can taste better. Either way, food is more enjoyable so therefore it is an improvement, regardless. Sweets are still hardly any better, though even sweets seem to have more flavor than before. They definately aren't good by any means, but I do have hope now. Even if it's a very very slow process, it's better than never getting better at all!! I saw my ent last week. He wanted to put me on steroids, thinking that it could quicken healing, but I'm pregnant, so I can't. I thought maybe some others could ask their doctors about this and maybe give it a try. Anything is worth trying! It seems like new people write in now and then, dealing with the same kind of thing but no one writes in to say they've had a full recovery. It's very scary. I really wonder if the sweet thing will ever improve completely, because of what I'm reading, that is the one flavor that is so resistant to healing all the way. Anyway, I find that I am not nearly as depressed as I was about this whole thing. The human body is an amazing thing. We learn to deal with the most awful things!

     
    Old 01-31-2007, 08:15 PM   #42
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    Re: Loss of Taste After Tonsillectomy

    So I baked some chocolate chip cookies tonight hoping that I would be able to taste the chocolate... not so much. I am on day 12 and I still cannot tast chocolate or soda. I am eating regularly, crunchy and soft solid foods. I have no problem with any food other than chocolate and soda. I'm scared that I will never get that taste back!! Figured I could vent since everyone else seems to have about the whole taste thing. All I can say is that the best thing out of this surgery is that I quit smoking!!!!.. and maybe lost about 5lbs, which I notice are coming back on really quick!! Good luck and pray we can all "taste" normally again someday!!

     
    Old 02-01-2007, 11:57 AM   #43
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    Re: Loss of Taste After Tonsillectomy

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by 2catfans View Post
    I'm at day 35 and still can't taste most things. I had complications which included post op bleeding at day 3 which required surgery (I fall into that 1% too) and I lost a lot of blood. I can taste in the front third of my mouth but not in the back. So most things taste like cardboard. Vanilla anything is about the most taste I have. I'm still not to have soda, or citrus because of the extra healing the doc says I still have to do. Besides, soda pop just burns my throat. I know that the Lord will heal ALL of my mouth. So keep hang on to that promise and don't let anyone tell you differently.
    I'm disconcerted after reading these threads - I didn't know beforehand that there was a chance I could lose my sense of taste after a tonsillectomy. I'm 17days post op, but as described above I am experiencing the same symptoms of only being able to taste things like vanilla and then only at the front 1/3rd of my tongue. Once passed that area everything tastes like a burn on the back of my throat, yuk!!

    The problem is once I've been able to start swallowing I've been trying anything and everything hoping that something will taste of something and being disappointed in the process. This is so frustrating and scary, especially reading that some still haven't got their taste back even after a year.

    Thanks to you all for allowing your troubles to be entered on this site, I am truly grateful to you all. I was beginning to wonder if I was the only one this has happened to.

     
    Old 02-01-2007, 03:45 PM   #44
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    Re: Loss of Taste After Tonsillectomy

    I also went into the tonsillectomy not knowing that I could lose my sense of taste. I had my tonsillectomy on Oct 17, and on Thanksgiving, things didn't taste quite right. I kept thinking there was something wrong with the apple pie I made, but everyone else said it was fine! By Christmas, however, I could taste everything again. So, don't get discouraged right away. 3 weeks probably isn't enough time for everything to be back to normal. I wasn't back to normal for almost 2 months.

    And you're right - this board is a wonderful place. Almost 4 months post-op, and I'm still visiting it daily to offer hope to those who feel like giving up, because I was one of you not too long ago. Best wishes.

    Kelly

     
    Old 02-01-2007, 08:12 PM   #45
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    Re: Loss of Taste After Tonsillectomy

    Thanks for the hope Yellowbird. I'm just over three weeks post-op now. My taste is still terrible. I tried to drink a latte today. After about three sips I poured it down the drain. It tasted like bitter metal in my mouth! So sad, because I love coffee. I feel like eating is a waste and it's certainly not enjoyable.

    I'm really glad to hear that you regained your taste. It makes me feel better that I'm not the only one experiencing this. I've tried to explain it to family, co-workers, but I just don't think they really understand what it's like.

    On the positive side, I'm looking forward to a strep throat/tonsilitis free life after I'm completely healed and back to my normal energy level. I'm back to work, but exhausted when I come home. I have a job where I'm on the go a lot!

     
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