HealthBoards (
-   Ear, Nose & Throat (
-   -   pain after adult tonsillectomy (

gcloud911 07-26-2006 11:17 PM

Re: pain after adult tonsillectomy here I am up at 1:15 am again...or should I say STILL?????
Thought I was having a pretty decent day today...will be 10 days post-op on the 27th. Felt about 25% human most of the day (which is about 35% more human than I've felt since my surgery) and then started to feel crummy again this afternoon, and have been dealing with the pain since!!!!! Hope this stops soon????:dizzy:

sunshine1212 07-29-2006 11:13 AM

Re: pain after adult tonsillectomy
Hey there gcloud,

I'm with ya on this. I had my tonsils out on the 19th. I've kept day 10 as the pie in the sky day to feel better and yet I sit here on day 10 feeling funky still. This surgery is a piece of cake (hmmm, I keep making food references) its the post op that is truly a trial of human dignity and resilience. I figured that I'm a master at handling sore throats but this is nothing like strep or tonsilitis.

My throat, and especially my uvula, are still so swollen that I am gagging on them. I woke up with some blood spots on the back of my throat and some renewed pain. I was happy that by day 6/7 I was off the heavy duty pain killers and taking only extra strength tylenol (the stomach pain and diarahea are just now starting to alleviate from all that) but today my fear is renewed that I am not yet through the darkest hour. I know I'm being dramatic, I'm not usually this much of a drama queen, but my goodness this is intense.

I have an anxiety problem that is exacerbating this post op period also. I tend to stay very active and busy as a way to let off and manage anxiety but I haven't been able to do that for the last 11 days so I keep having these terrible thoughts of not being able to make it through to the end. Yikes. I just want to order a pizza, and go swimming at the lake but I CAN'T and I'm scared I won't be able to ever again.

Well, you're in my thoughts and prayers and thanks to everyone who has contributed to this thread, it has been very helpful, now if you could just speed up time so I can get back to life. ;)

patsycatsy 07-30-2006 09:29 AM

Re: pain after adult tonsillectomy
Tough out the pain. Are you partying-down on your liquid Lortab? Get over it. Don't call here for drugs again.
This just really frosts my cookies.

I had my tonsils out when I was 23, and I have stated more than once that if someone offered me a million cash to do that again, I'd turn it down cold.

I've been through childbirth, eardrum rupturing swimmer's ear, hospital visiting migraines - and NOTHING has stuck in my memory like my tonsillectomy. Because I had chronic bacterial toxemia, my tonsils were poisoning me, it HAD to be done, and I had a fever and tonsillitis when it was done - I had run out of options.

Reading this post, I'm just really offput by the way doctors still expect their patients to tough their way through this miserable situation - in my opinion we should be sent home with morphine pumps.

I'm sorry for all of you, I truly am. I remember driving by a McDonalds and just pulling the car over and crying because I was so hungry, so tired of pain and so frustrated. Just cling to the fact that it ends in a couple of weeks, and that in about six months you'll be able to sneeze without holding your head on. And someday you'll be able to write to a forum like this and say, "I would do that again for a million cash."

Love to you all, Patsy Catsy

zacmito 07-31-2006 08:05 AM

Re: pain after adult tonsillectomy
I had a tonsillectomy three days ago, and the in keeps getting worse. My ears are staring to kill me. I cant talk yet or eat. How long did it take you guys for the ear pain to go, and voice to come back?

STAGRE 07-31-2006 08:32 AM

Re: pain after adult tonsillectomy
Hey Zac,

I had my tonsils out about 6 weeks ago. My ear pain started about day 5, I think, and lasted for about 5 days. It wasn't constant but it was just about unbearable. Luckily it was only one sided. Just keep taking your pain meds. I don't think they help a lot with the ear pain because I think it is the nerves going to the ears but it you forget the throat pain for a while. A heating pad helped me some. It didn't take it away completely but it did help. My ear pain would always sneak up on me. I never knew when it was coming and how long it would last. Of course I don't think I ever quit talking either:jester: That was probably the cause of a lot of my pain. I know it sounds weird but drink LOTS and LOTS of water, even though it hurts and CHEW GUM. The gum helps a lot with the soreness of the jaws and helps produce the saliva needed for healing. Try to get bubblegum or something. As soon as it gets really difficult to chew, rest and then pop a new piece in. I went through a lot of packs of Trident and Extra sugarless gum. It really does help. I am still chewing it occassionally because I still have a few scabs left and my throat still gets extremely dry. Just hang in there and tell yourself that it will get better.


gcloud911 08-01-2006 07:25 AM

Re: pain after adult tonsillectomy
I'm into week 2 after my surgery and still pretty much feel like crud!!!!:dizzy: I'm supposed to go back to work today, but I don't know yet if I will, or if I'll take another sick day.

Doc gave me a work slip to be off of work til Aug. 7th??????????? But I don't know that I can handle another week at home yet!!!!! I'm going stir crazy!!

STILL not sleeping in my own bed!!!!!!!!!!!! Have had to sleep sitting up on the couch since Day 1 of my surgery and my Uvula is still swollen, so when I lay my head back or try to lay on my side, it just blocks my airway and I can't sleep that way!!!!

This really bites!!!:mad:

STAGRE 08-01-2006 07:41 AM

Re: pain after adult tonsillectomy
I slept in the recliner for about 3 or 4 days and then went to my bed but propped up. I know what you mean by the uvula being swollen. Don't try to blow your nose either. I went back to work after a week. I figured I could feel just as bad there as I could at home:) I am in a office by myself so I could sort of stay to myself. Everything will hurt for about 3 weeks and then it will just sort of quit or calm down tremendously. I still feel the scabs a little but they don't hurt, just a funny feeling where the tonsils used to be. I guess my biggest complaint after 6 weeks is what feels like a dry spot on my throat. As a matter of fact, it is about directly in line with the uvula. I am 53+ and if I can do it, I know you can:) Just hang in there. I really won't last forever.

sunshine1212 08-01-2006 11:33 AM

Re: pain after adult tonsillectomy
Hang in there!! Week two is hard b/c you really are thinking you should feel so much better and you don't. I'm on day 13 now and had my follow up appointment. The doc explained to me that adults should expect a month long recovery, the first two weeks being really bad and then getting better from there. It still hurts when I swallow and my uvula is the size of Texas. I feel tired still but am finished with laying around convalesing. I ate cereal this morning and had moo shoo chicken last night. Eating more "scratchy" foods really helps clean up the scabs. I'd head to work, even if you can manage only half days, because it will make the time go by faster and that's the biggest hurdle to this surgery, being patient. Drink tons, I found that lemon Propel really helps, it burns a tinge at first then becomes very soothing. Keep an ice pack around your throat periodically and go for walks. I've been ensured that the pain will go away and it was tolerable for me by about day 10/11, now its sore and uncomfortable but I feel more energy and my mental state is much better. Keep haning in anyone going through this, you're all in my prayers.:angel:

lucky_me_2 08-01-2006 10:48 PM

Re: pain after adult tonsillectomy
Well I am on day 5 after my surgery. WOW I never thought I would experience such pain in my life. I didn't know it was possible. I had been told that I would have pain but it would be like a bad case of strep throat. Well I thought I was prepared. I had strep throat that lasted almost a month long back in May and began to lead to respiratory problems. So I thought recovery would be a piece of cake. The doctor had told me I should be fine in just about a week or so and would definitely feel better for my trip to Vegas 3 weeks later. Well now that it is getting closer I am scared I won't be better for my trip.

To let everyone else know I woke up out of surgery and I could talk. I felt something weird in my throat but I was generally ok. Sitting up and talking that night. I ate popsicles and even mashed potatoes. Well it has only gotten worse. Day 3, I woke up with a fever barely able to move out of bed. I had a little bit of ear pain but I slept most of the day. Day 4 I felt better, I thought I was on the road to recovery. Day 5 I woke up and thought I was dying. The ear pain I had today is indescribable and unbearable. It comes and goes too which is the worst part. Once it hits though tears just start to fall out of my eyes. I can't help but cry because the pain is so intense. No one told me I would have ear pain, but even if they had I don't think I could have prepared myself for this.

During this process I am staying with my parents so I can be taken care of. Well my mother being a nurse is scared I will get addicted to the pain killers. I am glad I found this site so she can read about it. I know I won't get addicited just the pain is so bad I need something to help just relax me. This whole process has started to really wear me down. I am getting so frustrated from being stuck inside the house. From being in pain and absolutely no one around me even beginning to understand it. From not being in my own bed. I can't sleep a full night sleep and waking up is the absolute worst. It scares me to know I have to face tomorrow because right now it looks as if it will only be worse.

sunshine1212 08-04-2006 11:34 AM

Re: pain after adult tonsillectomy
Hey Luckyme2,

Please hang in there. You are not alone in your struggles. I suffered not only immense physical pain but also emotional. I'm on day 16 of my post op and I'm still aching in my throat and sore, BUT, it is soooooooooo much better to handle than the first 2 weeks. I went for my follow up at 2 weeks and still have about another 2 weeks of healing to do so no activity still except short walks. Very frustrating as I want to be out hiking and travelling while I have the summer.

Keep drinking as much ice water as you can. I started decreasing my intake around day 10 b/c I felt so much better but woke up on day 14 with blood so I'm back to tons of ice water and haven't noticed any blood, and I check everytime I go to the bathroom which is quite frequently.

All in all, I have hope that I will feel normal again whereas the first two weeks I had none. As your pain begins to decrease your mental space will get better too. This is a one step forward two steps back process and you just have to forge through it. It sucks, its miserable, but unfortunately, pretty darn normal for this surgery. You're getting close to significant improvement. Hang in! Sunshine

Chase19 08-04-2006 01:21 PM

Re: pain after adult tonsillectomy
I know how you feel! I had my tonsils removed on the 1st of August, so that makes it day 4 for me. I'm still having pain that could even make a grown man cry(LOL-but I still try to have a positive attitude). I can't laugh or talk and it feels as if someone shoved a porcupine down my throat. I had a nurse from the surgery center chew me out for not sounding like I drank anything for the past few days(thanks to my mom and her huge mouth). I drank a lot more than she gives me credit for. Besides, it's not her going through that pain so why should she tell the truth?

With me, I took half the bottle of Lortab that they prescribed for me on the day of the surgery alone! I've found out that it feels better to drink really cold drinks, but it sure hurts taking the first few sips/bites.

As for night, I take sleeping pills(which I wasn't told that I couldn't take after the surgery) to get to sleep. When I get up, though, it hurts like H-E Double hockey sticks. Anyways, I feel as if the pain is improving, somewhat, from the day that I had surgery.

Anyways, what the nurse told you was rude and didn't need to be said. I also wish that doctors would be a little less suspicious of us patients. NOT ALL OF US ARE DRUG ADDICTS!!!!

debralynne 08-04-2006 05:03 PM

Re: pain after adult tonsillectomy
Hi All,
Well....... I can finally say the grass is looking much greener. It's been 3 weeks now since my surgery and I thought I would NEVER reach this point!! Life is coming back to me! :) Still a few scabs in the back, kinda feels like there's something stuck in my throat like rice or something, and I feel like I'm attempting to cough up a hairball, lol. My ears have gotten better! The left one acts up a bit when I talk to much or stuff like that. When I went for my follow-up last week (this would be 2 weeks post-op), I was so frustrated because of the pain and it didn't seem to be healing fast enough. So I was moaning and groaning back and forth to my doctor when he finally said (very direct and forthcoming-ly), "Look Deb... I pulled your tongue out of your mouth, clamped it down and cut some of the inside of your throat out. You've had an injury, it's gonna take time to heal!" That shut me up real fast. Hence to say, that was also the end of the Lortab so I had to deal with it on my own. I do not think I will ever eat Jello or chicken broth again! For those of you that just had the surgery, I really sympathize with you on the hunger issue. That was very difficult. I lost 9 pounds, have gained back 5 of it. Last week some friends came up and we went out to dinner and being the jackass that I can be, I ordered a steak actually thinking I could eat it. I just started slow last weekend and can pretty much eat anything now. Water has been very good to me. I still keep some with me at all times, have to gargle a bit now and then. All in all, things are much better. I cannot thank you enough for all your suggestions and encouragement. It really helped reading everything knowing I was not alone. That first week and a half was literally a living hell and thank God I will never have to go through that again... because I wouldn't. If you're feeling frustrated and just, well, downright crappy, vent it here and ask questions! Everyone helped me through and I'd be happy to do the same for someone else. P.S. TAKE THAT PAIN MEDICINE!!! I was going through a bottle every 2-3 days initially. Sometimes I got some unfriendly looks and remarks and that really sucks. Some people who take it just looking to get loaded ruin it for those who truly need it. And with a tonsillectomy, you definitely need it... no doubt about it. We take it just hoping for even the smallest relief from the pain. You know your intentions, and if someone had a problem with it, so be it. They would be singing a very different tune if they were standing there in your shoes for even 30 seconds!

KitRigger 08-04-2006 05:23 PM

Re: pain after adult tonsillectomy
Hi All
Thank god for the internet because this HealthBoard is an amazing outlet for people with the same issues. Today is day 1 of my tonsillectomy of fact 9 hours post-op to be exact. Ive read this board from beginning to end and have gotten move insight on what to expect than any ENT could give. Thank you all for sharing your not so pleasant experiences. As a matter of fact im glad I didnt read this before my surgury or I probably would have been scared and backed out - well probably not because my years of suffering from strep throat and tonsillitis pretty much mandated the removal of them.

So my first few observations/thought id like to contribute which seems to be similar to all of you.
*SWOLLEN uvula the size of a fat marker. Its so big im getting the gagging effect every time it touches the back of my throat. Was very nervous about it at first but my doc assured me it would subside - he suggested getting a bottle of Benadryl so my wife is headed out to get me some right now. Ill repost the results of that as soon as I can.

*While Ice cream tastes really good it leaves a film in my throat and mouth that makes me want to spit all day. Im done with the ice cream

*ICE CUBES, ICE CUBES, ICE CUBES - one ice cube at a time resting at the back of my throat is paradise. It slowly melts and numbs the pain plus you are getting the neccessary hydration.

*Liquid Tylenol with codene and loritab - Works great for the first few hours but tends to were off rather fast. Im probably dosing more than I should but hey whatever works.

Thats pretty much it for now - again thank you everybody for taking the time to share your experiences. I feel like we are all in this together.

tonsilfree482 08-11-2006 08:19 AM

Re: pain after adult tonsillectomy
I just wanted to reply to everyone to write about my experience. I got my tonsils out about 2 and a half weeks ago, it will be 3 weeks this Tuesday. I was terrified to do it after reading all these posts and was expecting the worst. I still decided to go through with it because over the last year I have had a ton of infections and did not want to deal with that anymore. Anyway I had the surgery and it was not bad at all!!! It is definitely tolerable and if you have a good doctor and go to a good hospital then anyone can get through it. I never even took the pain medicine, I mean my throat hurt but it was not unbearable pain-I was able to survive on liquid tylenol. I was able to talk and to eat and drink day one. I mean obviously I was only able to eat soft foods for a couple of weeks, but I am telling you it is not that bad.
I am just so glad that I did it and I don't want anyone to be afraid to have it done!

London_Lass 08-15-2006 05:16 PM

Re: pain after adult tonsillectomy
Hi everyone,
I had my tonsils out on the 9th august, and just came across this thread when searching Google for 'severe ear pain after tonsillectomy'. I had my tonsillectomy done in the UK, so I have different medication, but everything else that has been said on here is so true, especially with regard to ear pain! I was in agony, and beginning to think I was getting an infection or something....but reading all the posts on here I'm very relieved to know that it's normal! Thanks so much for all the tips that have been posted by everyone, I'm sure they will come in handy! :) I wish everyone who is recovering from a tonsillectomy the very best, and hope that they are pain-free and back to normal activities soon! xxx

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 09:36 AM.