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Key messages

Tonsillectomy and adenoidectomy are the most common childhood surgeries and are usually performed to treat snoring, obstructive sleep apnoea or frequent tonsillitis.

Some hospitals have higher than expected rates of readmission after these surgeries.

Use our resources to support families of children needing tonsil and adenoid surgery, to help tem understand what to expect and to hep minimise the need for children to return to hospital after tonsil surgery.

Tonsillectomy and adenoidectomy are the most common surgeries for children and are usually carried out  to treat snoring, obstructive sleep apnoea or frequent tonsillitis.

Around 70 hospitals in Victoria perform tonsillectomies and adenoidectomies, and our data shows around 10 per cent of hospitals have  readmission rates higher than expected for these surgeries.

We developed resources for health services to help families understand what to expect after their child’s surgery. 

You can use these as part of a targeted improvement initiative to minimise the risk of children needing to return to hospital after tonsil surgery.

View other resources to help families understand what to expect before and during surgery.

Caring for your child after tonsil surgery 

This fact sheet will help families understand what to expect and how to care for their child when returning home after surgery. It also details when to seek medical help if they are worried.

Pain management plan at home

Our pain management plan template helps families understand what medication to give their child and when, along with other tips to help manage their child’s pain.

Clinician phone script: Tonsillectomy follow up

This script helps clinicians provide advice and answer questions when calling families to follow up on how their child is recovering and to troubleshoot any issues. We recommed this is done day four after surgery, when the pain is likely to be worse.

Background

We partnered with five hospitals to reduce readmission rates after tonsil surgery, particularly for pain and dehydration.

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Page last updated: 20 May 2020

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