Ear, Nose and Throat – Tonsillectomy / Adenoidectomy

Patient Experience

  • Reference Number: HEY-1361-2023
  • Departments: Day Surgery (DSC) (CHH), ENT
  • Last Updated: 1 May 2023


This advice sheet has been produced to give you general information following your tonsillectomy and/or adenoidectomy. It is not intended to replace the discussion between you and your doctor. If after reading it you require further explanation, please discuss this with the relevant person who has been caring for you.

Your Consultant is………………………………………………………………………….

Your Surgeon is…………………………………………………………………………….


Should you need any further help or advice, please telephone the Day Surgery Centre, Monday to Friday 08:00 hours to 18:00 hours.

Telephone: Day Surgery Centre (01482) 468103 / 468173 /468174.  Please ask to speak to a member of the nursing staff.

At other times please call, Telephone: 01482 875875 and ask for Ward 16 Castle Hill Hospital.



If the Consultant needs to see you again an appointment will follow in the post.

Pain Relief

We will provide you with pain relief medication to take home and a regime for you to follow (Paracetamol, Codeine and Ibuprofen or Diclofenac). Pain from this operation can be at its most intense around 5 days after surgery and earache is not uncommon.

  • Crushed ice can help
  • Chewing gum can help
  • Mouthwash or spray can help

Eating and drinking

It is VERY important that you eat ‘normal’ food.

  • Chewing and swallowing helps healing
  • Toast and cereal are often good foods to start with


You can return to work after two weeks but if you feel you need a little longer you may need a further sick note from your doctor.


Bleeding and other complications following tonsillectomy are most likely in patients who do not take adequate pain relief and have not eaten properly.

These problems can occur as late as 7 – 10 days after surgery.


  • It is helpful to take some pain relief 30 – 40 minutes before a meal.
  • It is helpful to drink plenty of fluids.
  • It is advisable to stay indoors for 3 – 4 days immediately after surgery.
  • Avoid smoky and dusty atmospheres for two weeks.
  • You should not ‘smoke’ yourself.
  • Avoid anyone suffering from coughs or colds for two weeks.
  • Maintain good oral hygiene as it is usual to have ‘bad breath’ following Tonsillectomy.


You should call the Day Surgery Centre or ENT Ward (out of hours) if:

  • You are having a lot of pain and the pain relief medication does not seem to help.
  • Your temperature is raised and you cannot reduce it.
  • You have bleeding from the nose or mouth.
  • If you vomit fresh (bright red) blood.
  • If you bring up black or reddish / brown vomit more than once.
  • If you are unsure about any of your aftercare.

After your operation

Should you need to visit your doctor with a problem related to the operation within three weeks of the surgery, we would appreciate you contacting the Day Surgery Centre, Telephone: (01482) 468103 / 468173 /468174.  Please ask to speak to one of the nursing staff.

The Day Surgery Centre is continually striving to improve Patient information and we would be pleased to hear from you should you have any comments.

Should you require further advice on the issues contained in this advice sheet, please do not hesitate to contact the Day Surgery Centre.

This leaflet was produced by the Day Surgery Department, Castle Hill Hospital, Hull University Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust and will be reviewed in May 2026

General Advice and Consent

Most of your questions should have been answered by this leaflet, but remember that this is only a starting point for discussion with the healthcare team.

Consent to treatment

Before any doctor, nurse or therapist examines or treats you, they must seek your consent or permission. In order to make a decision, you need to have information from health professionals about the treatment or investigation which is being offered to you. You should always ask them more questions if you do not understand or if you want more information.

The information you receive should be about your condition, the alternatives available to you, and whether it carries risks as well as the benefits. What is important is that your consent is genuine or valid. That means:

  • you must be able to give your consent
  • you must be given enough information to enable you to make a decision
  • you must be acting under your own free will and not under the strong influence of another person

Information about you

We collect and use your information to provide you with care and treatment. As part of your care, information about you will be shared between members of a healthcare team, some of whom you may not meet. Your information may also be used to help train staff, to check the quality of our care, to manage and plan the health service, and to help with research. Wherever possible we use anonymous data.

We may pass on relevant information to other health organisations that provide you with care. All information is treated as strictly confidential and is not given to anyone who does not need it. If you have any concerns please ask your doctor, or the person caring for you.

Under the General Data Protection Regulation and the Data Protection Act 2018 we are responsible for maintaining the confidentiality of any information we hold about you. For further information visit the following page: Confidential Information about You.

If you or your carer needs information about your health and wellbeing and about your care and treatment in a different format, such as large print, braille or audio, due to disability, impairment or sensory loss, please advise a member of staff and this can be arranged.

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