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robmandu's avatar

How to deal with enlarged, but not inflamed, tonsils?

Asked by robmandu (21285points) June 25th, 2008

Two year old has noticeably enlarged tonsils. Pediatrician took one glance and said, “Oh yeah. Those are too big.” Ped also swabbed the area to test for strep: negative. No overt presentation of anything infected. No spots. That means that a course of antibiotics is unlikely to do anything (although I might insist trying just in case).

They’re simply just too big.

We have an appt with an ENT on Tuesday. And of course, I’ve been researching the interwebs. Have any fellow Flutherites dealt with this? Is the only viable option to remove the tonsils (either fully or partially)? Any non-bizaare home remedies to try?

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7 Answers

shrubbery's avatar

I had my tonsils removed when I was 5 years old because they were too big and I was choking in my sleep. I don’t really know of any other way, but I can ask my parents for you in the morning if they looked at any other options :)

robmandu's avatar

@shrubbery, yah… any advice or insight even just to prepare for removal would be welcome.

Oh, also wondering if you feel that not having tonsils has increased your likelihood to get sick, have asthma, etc?

shrubbery's avatar

Sure thing, I’ll get back to you after I’ve talked to them.

Ah ha well, about that… I’ve always had sinus problems. I’m not sure if it’s been since I had my tonsils removed or even before then, once again I’ll ask my parents. I would have had my adenoids removed had they not already removed my tonsils, I think because it would be too big a “hole”? Not sure though. I do have exercise induced asthma. I’ve had the tests where you sit in the chamber and they pump in stuff and was not actually diagnosed with asthma, but hell they should see me after a rowing race. I wouldn’t know if this was to do with my tonsils though, since they doctor doesn’t believe that I have asthma so I can’t really talk to him about it. I do get sick in general pretty easily, but once again I’m afraid I couldn’t tell you if it was the cause of having my tonsils removed. I will have a discussion with my parents about all of this, since my details are murky as I was only 5 at the time, and I don’t really have time to get sick so I don’t pay attention to it when I do, and the doctors just prescribe me a course of antibiotics and send me on my way. I have been referred to a specialist about my sinuses though, I just haven’t had the time to go and see them. I’ll get back to you in about 9 hours.

If your child does end up having their tonsils removed, here are some tips: presents are great :D and the only thing I could eat for about 2 days afterwards was lemonade icy-poles. Anything else and I would just vomit. I opted for the cream that numbs your hand where the needle goes in, instead of happy gas, and I think that was the right choice for me since I’m not a huge fan of needles.

shrubbery's avatar

Robmandu, sorry it’s taken me so long to get back to you! I had to leave before mum got up this morning but she is now in the process of writing everything down so I will type it up for you shortly!

shrubbery's avatar

Ok, so in my case enlarged tonsils as a child caused sleep apnoea and it just got worse as the tonsils got bigger. Mum, who is a nurse, and the ENT worried that I was therefore not getting enough oxygen or good sleep at night which is vital to being healthy and growing well. Mum notes that I was undersize for 5 years old, and in the 12 months post tonsilectomy I gained weight and height and a better appetite and was much more healthy. She thinks my sinus problems developed because of the enlarged tonsils in the first place, not from having them out. She says that she wished I had had mine out earlier, as this might have prevented the sinus problems. I was right about the adenoids thing, I can’t get them removed, as some people do to help with sinuses, because of my lack of tonsils it would leave too much space.

My tonsils were the biggest they’d ever seen at the time and Mum reckons that they kept them in a jar somewhere because they were so amazed… haha.

So based on our experiences, we recommend to get the tonsils removed now rather than later, because in my case the delay probably caused my sinus problems. We don’t know for sure though and we’re not Doctors (maybe PM shilolo?) but good luck with the appointment on Tuesday :)

robmandu's avatar

Thanks so much, @shrubbery, for the research and insights. It’s nice to read a real personal experience, not just generic medical analysis.

shrubbery's avatar

Not a problem, it was good for me to find out about it to cause I’d never really thought about it, I’d just forgotten. I wonder why no one else answered, maybe I’m the only Flutherite lacking tonsils :P

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