Removal of Adenoids and Respiratory Infections

When children are exposed to viruses, their bodies produce antibodies to help fight infection, and their adenoids, a mass of tissue in the passage that connects the back of the nasal cavity to the throat, temporarily swell.  This can lead to symptoms such as difficulty breathing through the nose or mouth, snoring, sinus symptoms and ear infections.

In some cases, adenoids are surgically removed under the impression that it will result in children having less respiratory tract infections. But a new study has found that although adenoidectomies are one of the most common surgeries performed on children, removing adenoids has little or no effect on the incidents of infection.  Researchers out of the University Medical Centre Utrecht studied more than one hundred children in 11 different hospitals over a six-year period and found that children who had adenoidectomies had an average of 7.91 episodes of respiratory tract infections, while those who did not receive the surgery had an average of 7.84 infections.

In both groups, the number of respiratory infections decreased over time, suggesting that it was their maturing immune system, not the surgery, that was the reason for improved health and reduced respiratory infections.

Source:  Medical News Today 

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