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advice needed! 18 years old

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Old 05-09-2007, 12:12 PM   #1
Join Date: May 2007
Location: MA
Posts: 5
megkath23 HB User
advice needed! 18 years old

Hi everyone-

I'm 18 years old and am having a tonsillectomy next tuesday (May 15). I'm extremely nervous- partially because I'm a HUGE baby when it comes to surgery but also because I have no idea what to expect! I've hade many episodes of strep throat/tonsilitis since I was younger, but never realized my tonsils needed to come out until now. I also have these things called "tonsil stones" which are disgusting and cause extremely bad breath...anyone else had to deal with these before? Anyway, I'm hoping I can get some feedback on what to expect after the much time should I expect before I'm able to start my summer job? (I told my boss 2 weeks, approx)..will I be in any pain when I immedietly wake up? Do they keep you at the surgery center for a while after the surgery? Any advice would be greatly appreciated!

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Old 05-09-2007, 10:40 PM   #2
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Join Date: May 2007
Location: Indianapolis, IN, USA
Posts: 21
Ang6425 HB User
Re: advice needed! 18 years old

Hey, MegKath. First of all, I want to wish you the best of luck. Now, the only experience I have to share is my own, but maybe it will shed some light.

I am 26, so a bit older than you. Your recovery will hopefully be a little faster/smoother as you are younger. I had my tonsils out 2 weeks ago tomorrow, so I am on day 13 after the surgery. I will start from the beginning for you...

I didn't know about the board before the surgery, so I had no idea what to expect. I went in on a Thursday morning feeling pretty nervous. I knew I was going to have to stay in the hospital overnight. I am a high risk surgury patient, but normally for this surgery you would not need to stay over. The beginning was just like any other surgery. You get all checked in at the hospital. They get you in a gown and tell you and whoever's there with you a little about what they will do. Hopefully they will be good about walking you thru everything. They will start an IV, so you can get your medicine. They will take you to the OR and your ENT and anestesioligist (I have no idea how to spell that) will be there. They will start the medicine that will put you to sleep.

You will wake up in recovery. Now, when I woke up I was really groggy and I do remember feeling soreness right from the start. They made me start with the water right away and it was nice to have the feeling of the ice water. I drank water like a camel the 1st 24 hours. They will probably release you as soon as you go to the bathroom like normal and you can walk on your own. They pain medication they give you helps a lot, but I definately remember feeling like I needed more and had to ask for it sometimes when I was there. (again, I stayed overnight.)

There are a few different kinds of medication your dr. may prescribe for you. I took a liquid acetominophen/codine elixer and a liquid antibiotic. The pain medication could be taken every 4 hours. The first 72 hours or so, cold water was nice. Starting about day 5, my scabs started coming off. I coughed constantly as my body was trying to cough up the scabs. (gross, I know). Cold things started to hurt and I had to drink room temp. water. Days 5-11 were the worst for me. I couldn't eat ANYTHING. Not even oatmeal or applesauce. Everything felt like it was getting caught. I couldn't sleep at all, either. I would wake up every 2 1/2 to 3 hours cause my pain medicine wore off and I would stare at the clock until I could have more.

On day 13, I am sleeping much better. I had oatmeal for dinner and while it was slow, I ate all of it. :-) I am still taking my pain medication, but I can see light at the end of the tunnel.

For me, there have been a lot of emotional times where the hunger and lack of sleep definately catch up to me. I can only say that I hope you keep your head up and just remember, it won't last forever! You will get better and then you shouldn't have any more issues with sore throats!

Good luck!! Let us know how you do!!

Old 05-10-2007, 08:08 AM   #3
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Re: advice needed! 18 years old

Pain management:
1) Lortab liquid
2) Motrin (only during the worst it thins the blood)
3) Steriodal shot on day seven (will reduce swelling within eight hours)
4) Oticaine Ear Drops.. lydocaine for your ears
5) Simply Saline Nasal Spray and Ayr Saline Nasal Gel
6) Ice packs for the neck and heat packs for the ears

Sleep Management:
This is going to stink.. cat nap all the time in an elevated position. with the saline sprays and gels you should be able to get by with out the humidifier. Prepare to snore like you haven't before this will decrease as swelling decreases.

Odd Things you will note:
Swollen and sore uvula and tongue.. both get stretched and pulled they will swell and be bruised.. side effects? Uvula: Snoring, gaging, fluid shooting out the nose if you drink at a forward tilt. Tongue: Loss of taste, swelling, slurred speech, and pain.

Things to look for.. oral thrush: Really furry white/yellow tongue with a horrrible smell. What can you do to prevent it.. activa yogurt, brush your teeth, gums, and tongue frequently.

Bleeding: If this starts suck on ice and sip ice water. Place ice pack on throat. Let blood pool in mouth and spit in cup. If bleeding pumps with every heart beat or doesn't slow/stop after 15 minutes call you ENT and be prepared to go to the emergency room.

In the mean time: DRINK.. DRINK.. and drink water, play video games, lurk on this sight, and watch TV. Take it easy and drink protien supplemented shakes/smoothies if eating becomes impossible and eat what ever you can tolerate. Avoid highly acidic food, alcohol and any other irritant like smoke.

Best of Luck to you.
If we learn by our mistakes, I am working on one hell of an education.

Old 05-11-2007, 10:45 AM   #4
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Mercerville, NJ
Posts: 5
ANR1286 HB User
Re: advice needed! 18 years old

I'm 20 and I just got mines out last Tuesday via Coblation (method)! I was petrified, and people kept telling me "Oh it's feels like you have the worst case of strep!" and it REALLY doesn't. I'll give you it does feel like strep, but I've had strep that hurts worse. Here's a little 'journal' of what happened;

Day 1 Operation: Scheduled surgery at 8:15, and they didn't have to do pre-op on me (blood test). They will make you pee in a cup for a pregnancy test (mandatory on all girls) and put on hospital gowns with your cheeks showing. Then they tell you whats going to happen and what to do after. They put the IV on the side of my wrist (DO NOT FREAK OUT! This does NOT hurt! I was petrified it was going to). Then they walk you to the operating room and wrap you in a few blankets because it's FREEZING back there. Then they put some NIIICE stuff in you and you fall asleep. About two hours later I woke up with a blanket wrapped aroung the top of my head (to keep warm) and the doctors kept telling me to breathe (to pull the tube out of my mouth- You probably won't feel it, I didn't.) It was odd because I kept trying to stay awake and look around, but it took me a good 15 minutes to do so. Words of advice- if you need to pee at this point hold it, or they'll make you use a bed pan. They tell you not to talk, remind you to drink water, and your good to go!

Day 1 PostOp: SLEEPY! They put me on 2 tsp Augmentin (antibiotic) and 1-2 pills percocet every 4 hours. I felt pretty good, not much pain (NO pain from my adnoids), although everything I swallowed had to be gulped (they will tell you NOT to sip anything). My best friend came over and I talked and talked (although my voice sounded like when a deaf person talks). I was able to drink water and eat MUSH like jello and pudding

Day 2-3: Felt pretty good, lots of sleep. STILL kept talking when I got a lot of "SHUT UP! You're going to regret it!" I started LIVING on McDonalds strawberry milk shakes. Was a little itchy

Day 4: Realized I'm apparently allergic to Percocet, so I had to get Tylonal with Codiene. Doesn't work nearly as well, but I wasn't in too much pain

Day 5-7: Weened myself off pain killers as I didn't need them much. Everything going great, and even ate mashed potatoes and a little bit of chicken chewed to almost liquidation hehe

Day 8: Looked at my throat and realized my adnoids were bleeding, so I went to the doctor. She used a nasal spray on me and stuck a little camera down my nose (only hurt a little bit from cleaning it with alcohol). She said most people have lost the scabs by now, and I was just a slow healer and was starting to lose the scab on my adnoids.

Day 9: Felt pretty good, although my adnoids seemed to be bleeding a little more, but nothing hurt. Felt good enought to go to Cracker Barrel. I was able to eat fried apples, dumplings, and (a) french fry. I had to go to Home Depot; You will realize quickly that standing alone becomes a workout!

Today: Last night I kept waking up because I was swallowing this stuff that felt like snot and mucous. Couldn't taste it though. When I fully woke up a few hours later I was in a little bit of pain and looked to find my scabs gone. Took Tylonal w/ Codiene, and I'm okay! Just watch, because right after you lose them is apparently the time you have to watch for bleeding, so be extra careful what you eat the next couple days!

Things you should deffinitly buy;
ICE CREAM!! (can't have any 'chunks' in it; ex chocolate chips, reeses, etc)
Ice pops
Vitamin water/flavored water (you'll get flavor bored FAST)
PLAIN mashed potatoes. Wendy's cheese potatoes are nice too!
This one sounds odd, but trust me; Stool softener

Things to avoid;
Anything Citrusy
Carbonated drinks
Fruits (can't stress spice and citrus enough!)
Raw Veggies
Nuts, Potato chips, crunchy foods period
This is pretty much when you just use your common sense..

Things to expect;
The operating room to be freezing and waking up as an eskimo
You should feel pretty good, but remember you just got parts of your body taken out, so just REST REST REST!
Drink lots of fluids. Because your healing, drink more than usual
DO NOT take asprin for 2-3 weeks
Brushing teeth 2-3 times a day
Don't blow your nose for 2-3 weeks. Nurses will tell you to suck it back and spit it out, as gross at it sounds.
Cold compresses and ice chips help pain
You will have a little bit of blood in mucuous/saliva the first day or 2
You will get white/yellow scabs in your throat
Try not to sneeze. If you have to, do it with your mouth wide open
Try not to yawn by clenching the jaw and breathing deeply through your nose
Don't gargle


Hope that helped. It's a lot, but you can't find info like that on ******!

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