Tonsillectomy at age 47


Tonsillectomy and Recovery- Lori’s Story

I am 47 years old and had a tonsillectomy November 16th. I wanted to thank everyone for posting their stories as it really helped me prepare. I expected the worse based on my age, but was pleasantly surprised that it was not nearly as bad as I thought. The day of surgery the worst part was getting the IV in – 3 technicians and 5 needles later they finally got it – I apparently have very small veins. When I woke up they asked what my pain level was and I said it was about a 5 (just when I swallowed). They said I needed to be down to a 3 to go home so I had some apple juice and an freeze pop and then said I was fine – was just so tired from the anesthesia I wanted to go home. I was given Vicodin and a liquid steroid. I wasn’t able to get the Vicodin in liquid form. When I got home my husband crushed the pill in jello but I could still taste it. I swallowed the pills from that point on – it wasn’t that bad, was just fearful of it getting stuck and would really have to convince myself to take it. For the first few days it was really just a sore throat – as long as I kept drinking or having ice chips it wasn’t too bad. Waking up in the morning was the worst – definitely try to drink during the night. I really just took the pain meds in the morning and evening (and only took 1 instead of 2 at a time) for fear of running out before days 5-8. Still have plenty left over. By day 5 I just wanted real food. My husband got me broccoli cheddar soup from Panera and it was the best thing ever. After that I slowly incorporated more and more back into my diet. Enjoyed Thanksgiving with family (mashed potatoes and mac and cheese for me this year) and even did a bit of shopping that night. The ear and jaw pain started around day 6, but not constantly – mostly ok during the day, just got bad when laying down to go to sleep. Today is day 13 and I had my follow up – about 50% of the scabs are gone. She said for the next week or two I might start feeling better one day and the next day it might get worse again until they are gone. My tonsils were huge, chronically inflamed and I had tonsil stones – will not miss that smell at all. Pain never got above a 6 for me – during the day pain was much lower. The hardest part of the recovery for me was the odor from the scabs – no matter how much I brushed my teeth, ate or drank it wouldn’t go away. Thankfully that only lasted a few days. Now I just can’t wait till I can fully cough and yawn.

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