Tonsillectomy Scabs

After Tonsillectomy- What does the throat look like?

Tonsillectomy Scabs coming off

Tonsillectomy Scabs

One of the most common questions I get from tonsillectomy patients is about scabs. In particular, people want to know whether their throat looks normal. Some folks get downright obsessed with their tonsillectomy scabs. It’s almost like loosing a tooth- the tongue just can’t seem to stop exploring the new space created. And so it is for patients recovering from tonsillectomy. I personally never cared to look back there, but I think I was the exception.

I’ve seen many tonsillectomy scab pictures. Everyone heals differently. Sometimes the scabs are white, like the ones shown here. Sometimes they take on a more greenish color. It’s also quite common for the uvula to swell considerably, especially in the first few days following tonsillectomy. All of this makes it difficult to swallow, but it also makes it very important to swallow. Using those throat muscles helps speed recovery. Drinking cold liquids and sucking on ice cools the tissues and reduces inflammation. That’s two wins!

With special thanks to the young lady who contributed these tonsillectomy scab pictures, I present the following: One example of how the throat can look on day 1, day 2, day 3, day 4, day 5, day 6, and day 7, post tonsillectomy. Feel free to comment or ask questions at the bottom of the page.

Usually between days seven and ten, it’s common to see tonsillectomy scabs coming off.  As the tonsillectomy scabs are coming off, some bleeding is common.  Gargling with cold water will usually stop the bleed.  If it does not, seek medical attention. I’ve read that about 5% of tonsillectomy patients have bleeds that require treatment.  It usually happens in the first day or as tonsillectomy scabs coming off tear the tissue.  Don’t try to “help the process along,” by poking at or rubbing the scabs.Tonsillectomy fire extinguisher text

Did you take your own pictures of your tonsillectomy scabs? I’m always trying to add to the resources for other patients. If you have good quality photos of your throat as you recovered from tonsillectomy, connect with me on Facebook: Tonsillectomy Resources on Face Book Thank you!

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Take care and stay hydrated!
-Greg Tooke 

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Tonsillectomy Scabs- a photo journal:

More Throat Pictures

27 thoughts on “Tonsillectomy Scabs

  1. It is great comfort reading other people’s experiences about tonsillectomy.
    It’s not me, but my 8 year old son that has had them removed 4 days ago and has gone through unimaginable pain. As a mum it is horrible to experience your child in pain and I feel a deep sense of guilt for putting him through this! If I knew what I know now I just would’ve gone without! The ENT persuaded us to have his tonsils removed as they were the size of grapes in his throat, one being slightly larger than the other. Other than obstructing his oesophagus, there was no other pain associated with his swollen tonsils. He’d only had tonsillitis twice in his life. The doctor said that it could be a possible case of Lymphoma and they needed to be removed so they could be sent off to the lab for testing. God forbid if that comes back positive…
    Now, I feel like I am drugging my kid constantly with medicines that should be taken with food. But how can I, when he refuses to eat because of the pain? Anyway I am in the mist of it, feeling his pain constantly and waiting for him to gain back his appetite and see his happy smile again. Thanks for letting me share this at 3am in the morning after being woken up by his cries.

  2. I am currently on day 8 and honestly this has been an extremely painful experience. I was told by my surgeon that I would need a full two week recovery. I didn’t really think I’d need it but he said I would because my tonsils were exceptionally large and I am also a special case, considering I had mine removed at age 4 and then they grew back, so I was required to remove them again at age 16. Even after all my specific complications I still didn’t think it would be this bad. The first four days were terrible. I had to stay on the Lortab prescribed to me to stay sane. The pain was ridiculous. I didn’t eat a single thing for four days, I had no appetite. I forced myself to drink water but it was extremely painful to swallow and yawn, which I had to do often. Days 5 through 7 were all the same. I ran out of my medicine and could live without it so I just dealt with the dull throbbing pain all hours of the day. I still had no appetite but forced myself to eat yogurt and ice cream whenever I was up to it. I had heard that working through the pain and using your throat was important in the recovery process. When I woke up in the morning it was the worst. The pain went from a 4 during the day to a 7 during the night and morning. Throughout the whole first week I didn’t sleep consistently and would always wake up for two to three hours in the night and just lay there in pain until I drifted to sleep. Now on Day 8 I’m feeling a lot better and it doesn’t hurt while resting. Just whenever I swallow/cough/yawn or talk loud or for long period of time I feel a very sharp pain that ranges from a 6 to a 7. Can’t talk any louder than a whisper without hurting myself. I’m trying to force myself to work through it and eat more substantial things (like broth and smoothies) now that my appetite is just returning. Still not a single full meal or solid food in a week + a day. No matter how much I brush my teeth my breath stinks! It’s bright white, hoping to submit some pictures but mine are very similar. This really sucks, not trying to scare anyone but thought I would share my experience. Anybody else have it this bad? Or have them grow back and need them removed a second time? I was told this was extremely rare, about 2%… Let me know :) trying to stay positive.

  3. I’m on day 6. Recovery has been I guess really easy for me. I don’t know if it is from all the prep I did or if it’s because I have stayed beyond hydrated or hell if it’s just because I’m good with pain? I’ve been using extra strength Tylenol, a heating pack, ice packs and chewing on ice chips for any kind of pain. Mostly in the ear and jaw. My throat only hurts when I eat stuff I maybe shouldn’t? Feels like it get stuck and irritated. So far honestly it hasn’t been as bad as all the horror stories I have read.

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