Swan LogoInstructions for Home Care After TONSILLECTOMY/ADENOIDECTOMY


  1. Cool, clear liquids including water, Koolaid, Gatorade, ginger ale or other sodas, apple or grape juice, sherbet, ice cream, popsicles.
  2. Activity should be restricted to getting up with assistance to use the bathroom.
  3. Take Tylenol with codeine or other medication that was prescribed to keep the patient comfortable.


  1. Take pain medication upon awakening.
  2. Drink cool liquids and eat very soft foods such as custard, applesauce, Jell-O, milk, broth, pudding, yogurt, ice cream, Carnation Instant Breakfast drink, Slimfast or Sustacal.
  3. Patient should drink 1/2 to 1 quart of fluids per day to prevent dehydration.
  4. Stay in bed or on the couch and restrict physical activity.


  1. Take Tylenol or Tylenol with codeine or other pain medication if needed. The patient may have eggs (no bacon/sausage), cooked cereals such as Cream of Wheat, oatmeal, french toast, pancakes. Dinner may consist of soups, peanut butter & jelly sandwiches, cheese sandwich which is warmed in the microwave (not grilled or toasted).
  2. Rest in bed or on the couch most of the day.


  1. Use regular or extra strength Tylenol as needed for pain. If needed, use the prescription pain medication. After 2-3 days on the pain medication, the patient may become constipated. If this does happen, have the patient drink a glass of prune juice followed by a glass of water before bedtime.
  2. Diet can be increased to mashed potatoes, soft vegetables (except corn), pasta such as macaroni and cheese, buttered noodles, spaghettio’s, etc.
  3. The patient may get out of bed but should remain in the house.


  1. Continue Tylenol or prescription pain medication if needed.
  2. Increase diet to hamburger, fish, chicken however continue significant cool fluid intake.
  3. Expect to develop ear discomfort during this period of time. This indicates that the scabs are sloughing off, a part of the healing process. You must be quiet, drink extra fluids and use the pain medication if needed.


  1. Continue with soft diet.
  2. Patient may return to school 7-10 days after surgery depending on how he/she is feeling. The patient may return to work after 7-10 days unless job consists of heavy lifting. If this is the case, patient should go on “light duty” for the second and third week post-op.


In about 2% of the people, there is some bleeding when the scabs are sloughing off after surgery. If this does happen, do not become excited because the bleeding is usually slight. Be quiet. Sit up and spit out the blood gently if you want to. Drink ice water and remain quiet. Take the Tylenol with codeine elixir or other pain medication. If the bleeding does not stop promptly within 5 minutes, call the office. If you are unable to reach us and the bleeding continues, go to the emergency room.

Avoid orange juice, grapefruit juice, tomato juice or other acidic products as they will burn the throat. They are not harmful but they will make you uncomfortable.

Two white patches will form where the tonsils were removed so do not be alarmed if you see them. They are perfectly normal. Most people have some pain in the throat and neck for the first few days after surgery and 5-7 days after surgery these scabs with start to slough off in small pieces and at that time usually your ears will ache. This may be controlled with the use of Tylenol and does not mean that there is an ear infection.

During the healing process, the patient’s breath will also smell badly. This is normal.

It takes three weeks to completely heal the tonsil area. Therefore, do not engage in any activity that raises the heart rate such as: aerobic activity, sports, biking, swimming, jogging, etc. Do not eat dry hard foods such as crackers, cookies, popcorn, peanuts and potato chips. Also, no chewing gum for three weeks after surgery.


Form 113 Rev 11/05

361 High Street Somersworth, NH 03878
John M. O'Day, M.D., F.A.C.S. Marjorie K. Stock, M.D. ,F.A.C.S.
William E. Long, Hearing Instrument Specialist
Telephone: 603-692-4500 Fax: 603-692-4520
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