Stephanie Tells Her Tonsillectomy Story
Day of surgery (Day 1):
Everything was great before and during my op, friendly staff and a successful surgery. After I woke up from my general anaesthetic, I couldn’t open my eyes I felt so tired and drowsy when all of a sudden, someone put a straw in my mouth so I could have some water. I didn’t have the energy to look around to see where I was or who was giving it me. I was wheeled back to the area where my bed was in in ambulatory care. All day I just felt extremely nauseous, so much so I couldn’t face to my left as I just felt dizzy. I came out of surgery about 10:30am. I went home at about 5pm. The whole day was awful. Surprisingly, my throat was ok! Slightly sore but nothing much. I WANTED to eat, I could taste blood in my mouth and I wanted it to go! The nurse gave me an egg mayo sandwich and a pot of ice-cream. They were both so tasty and I was very hungry. I took the smallest bite of a sandwich and a bit of ice-cream and I just couldn’t eat anymore; I felt like I was going to throw up. That’s what the first day was all about – feeling sick from the anaesthetic. I was given Ibuprofen and Co-codamol when I was discharged from the hospital. I went to bed early as I was so tired – I woke up in the night and had a set of pain killers but just felt like a standard sore throat and only hurt when I swallowed (I had a bin to spit into and it helped loads!)
I stayed at my Mom’s house for my recovery and my boyfriend visited me most days. The pain was just like a bad sore throat today. The real issue for me today was whenever I ate something soft (scrambled egg, pasta etc.) it got stuck in the holes where my tonsils were. I kept having to ‘hawk’ them up as they wouldn’t go down with water or anything! I think because the tissue is still quite soft it just kept sticking to the wall. I had pasta, cheese sauce and bacon (like a carbonara) for dinner as from day 1, I have felt like I can eat anything! Believe it or not, the bacon was fine! The problem was the pasta, getting stuck constantly. It was more annoying than painful! My boyfriend took me out for a drive in the car but after 20 minutes, I started to feel nauseous again slightly. I think by this point I feel like I can do more than I actually can! That night I went to bed early too, I was shattered. I woke up a few times but didn’t need any pain killers.
Woke up and ate toast slowly for breakfast, again, like the bacon, that didn’t get stuck! Starting to see more white at the back of my throat now and feel more scabs but it’s only sore when I swallow or talk. It was okay today only a 3/10 pain!
Woke up at 5am for painkillers. My throat was burning! Like a 7/10 pain I’d say. Been more difficult than ever today to swallow anything but had my usual toast in the morning which was ok. Pain is worse when I first get up, then it gets better as the day goes on.
Today has been the worst in terms of pain. This morning I was drooling and the pain was a 9/10! I haven’t eaten anything today even ice cream was a struggle. Well, my mom made me eat my dinner but it wasn’t exactly a pleasant experience. The pain always gets better in the day but today I have barely spoken.
I went to the doctors today as the pain was terrible and yesterday I ran out of my pain medication! Turns out my throat was infected. What a relief! I got antibiotics and more painkillers although the painkillers were different for some reason. Easily the most miserable day so far – not necessarily for pain but I couldn’t eat all day, kept spitting as my saliva was so thick and I didn’t want to swallow it and spitting out yellow stuff. Absolute hell.
Woke up this morning and didn’t feel much better, vile taste in my mouth. Felt so, SO hungry. After I took my antibiotics this morning and pain relief I felt much better – ate so much toast as the swelling had gone down. Today has been much better, can swallow with minimal to no pain. Just feels like it did before my op. Bliss. By the evening, I ate sausages and I had that feeling that food got stuck on the wall of my throat again. I don’t know if it is this or whether it’s irritating a scab – either way, it’s annoying.
I woke up again with a horrible taste in my mouth and spitting out yellow stuff from the infection (ew!) soon felt better after I bushed my teeth. I had some of my new painkillers (Zapain) that the doctors gave me and they made me feel SO sick. The pain isn’t that bad now so I’ll just stick with normal paracetamol if I need it. Of course, I am keeping up with my antibiotics. I feel exhausted, plus it’s so hot at night. I keep waking up at like half 7 and not because I’ve had enough sleep…
Day 9 onwards:
I have started getting much better. Stopped taking painkillers as they made me feel sick and I don’t need them anymore. Infection is clearing. It’s all good! Throat is still healing obviously so food sometimes gets stuck if I don’t chew properly but I can happily say now that I feel good again!
In conclusion, despite everything I read on the internet prior to the tonsillectomy, it was not as bad as some people make out. However, I do recognise that everyone has different experiences. It was so worth it! If you are having an adult tonsillectomy or are recovering from one now, hang in there it will get better and you’ll be so happier. No pain, no gain.