Post-tonsillectomy haemorrhage: a prospective, randomized, controlled clinical trial of cold dissection versus bipolar diathermy dissection.
ABSTRACT To determine whether bipolar dissection tonsillectomy is associated with a higher post-operative haemorrhage rate than cold dissection tonsillectomy.
Prospective, randomized, controlled trial.
Otolaryngology department of a teaching hospital.
Two hundred and forty-five patients undergoing elective tonsillectomy between July 2002 and November 2004.
Patients were randomly assigned to either bipolar dissection or cold dissection (with bipolar haemostasis).
Post-operative haemorrhage rates, management (conservative or surgical) and blood transfusion requirements were recorded. The grade of surgeon and history of quinsy were also recorded.
One hundred and forty-one patients (58 per cent) were randomized to the bipolar dissection and 104 (42 per cent) to the cold dissection groups. Seventeen patients (12.1 per cent) in the bipolar dissection group and eight patients (7.7 per cent) in the cold dissection group suffered haemorrhage (p = 1.0; degrees of freedom (Df) 0.0; 95 per cent confidence intervals (CI) -0.1 to 0.0). The haemorrhage rates for procedures conducted by senior house officers, specialist registrars and consultants were 11.4 per cent, 10.3 per cent and 5.0 per cent, respectively. Two patients required surgical intervention, both from the bipolar dissection group. No patients required blood transfusion. A history of quinsy was not associated with an increased haemorrhage rate.
The difference in haemorrhage rates between groups and surgeon grades did not reach statistical significance. Nonetheless the trend towards a greater incidence of haemorrhage in the bipolar group and in procedures conducted by more junior surgeons during the trial raised concerns. The results of the National Prospective Tonsillectomy Audit and our interim results have led us to abandon the trial and disallow the use of bipolar dissection in tonsillectomies performed by junior staff members.
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ABSTRACT: The objective of this paper is to describe an extended microscopic hemostasis technique involving cauterization of exposed blood vessels that were not actively bleeding in tonsillar fossa after bipolar tonsillectomy and to assess the rate of post-tonsillectomy hemorrhage with this technique in children who had bipolar tonsillectomy. The medical records of children who underwent microscopic bipolar tonsillectomy with extended hemostasis between June 2008 and January 2011 were reviewed. Relevant history and physical examination, diagnosis, and characteristics of postoperative hemorrhage were recorded; 994 children (531 males, 463 females), aged between 1 and 18 years (6 ± 3 years), underwent tonsillectomy; of the 994 patients, 11 (1.1%) developed post-tonsillectomy hemorrhage. No primary post-tonsillectomy hemorrhage occurred. The hemorrhage was seen 6-13 days after the surgery. One patient had bleeding after having trauma to the neck on postoperative day 13. Of the 11 patients with post-tonsillectomy bleeding, 3 had blood clot with no active bleeding and 8 exhibited active bleeding after removal of blood clot. Of the 994 patients, 8 (0.8%) needed intervention to control active bleeding. Compared to previous studies of bipolar tonsillectomy, extended microscopic hemostasis achieved by cauterization of tonsil fossa non-bleeding blood vessels appeared to reduce bleeding rate after bipolar cautery tonsillectomy. The present study did not include a control arm; further randomized controlled studies are needed to establish the definite effect of extended microscopic hemostasis technique on the rate of hemorrhage rates after tonsillectomy techniques.Archives of Oto-Rhino-Laryngology 09/2011; 269(4):1269-75. · 1.29 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Tonsillectomy is one of the most common surgical procedures in the United States, with more than 530,000 procedures performed annually in children younger than 15 years. Tonsillectomy is defined as a surgical procedure performed with or without adenoidectomy that completely removes the tonsil including its capsule by dissecting the peritonsillar space between the tonsil capsule and the muscular wall. Depending on the context in which it is used, it may indicate tonsillectomy with adenoidectomy, especially in relation to sleep-disordered breathing. This guideline provides evidence-based recommendations on the preoperative, intraoperative, and postoperative care and management of children 1 to 18 years old under consideration for tonsillectomy. In addition, this guideline is intended for all clinicians in any setting who interact with children 1 to 18 years of age who may be candidates for tonsillectomy. The primary purpose of this guideline is to provide clinicians with evidence-based guidance in identifying children who are the best candidates for tonsillectomy. Secondary objectives are to optimize the perioperative management of children undergoing tonsillectomy, emphasize the need for evaluation and intervention in special populations, improve counseling and education of families of children who are considering tonsillectomy for their child, highlight the management options for patients with modifying factors, and reduce inappropriate or unnecessary variations in care. The panel made a strong recommendation that clinicians should administer a single, intraoperative dose of intravenous dexamethasone to children undergoing tonsillectomy. The panel made a strong recommendation against clinicians routinely administering or prescribing perioperative antibiotics to children undergoing tonsillectomy. The panel made recommendations for (1) watchful waiting for recurrent throat infection if there have been fewer than 7 episodes in the past year or fewer than 5 episodes per year in the past 2 years or fewer than 3 episodes per year in the past 3 years; (2) assessing the child with recurrent throat infection who does not meet criteria in statement 2 for modifying factors that may nonetheless favor tonsillectomy, which may include but are not limited to multiple antibiotic allergy/intolerance, periodic fever, aphthous stomatitis, pharyngitis and adenitis, or history of peritonsillar abscess; (3) asking caregivers of children with sleep-disordered breathing and tonsil hypertrophy about comorbid conditions that might improve after tonsillectomy, including growth retardation, poor school performance, enuresis, and behavioral problems; (4) counseling caregivers about tonsillectomy as a means to improve health in children with abnormal polysomnography who also have tonsil hypertrophy and sleep-disordered breathing; (5) counseling caregivers that sleep-disordered breathing may persist or recur after tonsillectomy and may require further management; (6) advocating for pain management after tonsillectomy and educating caregivers about the importance of managing and reassessing pain; and (7) clinicians who perform tonsillectomy should determine their rate of primary and secondary posttonsillectomy hemorrhage at least annually. The panel offered options to recommend tonsillectomy for recurrent throat infection with a frequency of at least 7 episodes in the past year or at least 5 episodes per year for 2 years or at least 3 episodes per year for 3 years with documentation in the medical record for each episode of sore throat and 1 or more of the following: temperature >38.3°C, cervical adenopathy, tonsillar exudate, or positive test for group A β-hemolytic streptococcus.Otolaryngology Head and Neck Surgery 01/2011; 144(1 Suppl):S1-30. · 1.73 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Background: Septoplasty, tonsillectomy (with and without adenoidectomy) and cervical lymph node excision are amongst the most common 50 inpatient operations in Germany. Intracapsular tonsillectomies (i.e. tonsillotomies) are increasingly performed. The aim of this study was to evaluate technical traps and pitfalls as well as alleged medical malpractice associated with tonsillectomy (TE), adenoidectomy (AE), tonsillotomy (TT), septoplasty (SP) and cervical lymph node excision (LN). Methods: A questionnaire was sent to the Regional Medical Conciliation Boards, Medical Services of the Health Insurance Companies (MDK) and Regional Institutes of Forensic Medicine in Germany to collect anonymized cases of complications following TE, TT, AE, LN and SP. The results were discussed in the light of the contemporary medical literature and published trials and verdicts in Germany. Results: The response rate of our survey was 55.9%. The Institutes of Forensic Medicine contributed nine cases, 49 cases were submitted by the Regional Conciliation Boards and none by MDK. All forensic cases were associated with exsanguinations following tonsillectomy including two children (5 and 8 years of age) and seven adults (aged 20 to 69 years). The fatal post-tonsillectomy hemorrhage (PTH) had occurred 8.7 days on average; four patients experienced the bleeding episode at home (day 5, 8, 9 and 17, respectively). Repeated episodes of bleeding requiring surgical intervention had occurred in 6 patients. Three Conciliation Boards submitted decicions associated with TT (1), AE (4), LN (3), SP (16) and TE (25). Cases with lethal outcome were not registered. Only three of the 49 cases were assessed as surgical malpractice (6.1%) including lesion of the spinal accessory nerve, wrong indication for TE and dental lesion after insertion of the mouth gag. The review of the medico legal literature yielded 71 published verdicts after AE and TE (29), LN (28) and SP (14) of which 37 resulted in compensation of malpractice after LN (16; 57%), TE (10; 37%), SP (8; 57%) and AE (2; 100%). There were 16 cases of PTH amongst 27 trials after TE resulting either in death (5) or apallic syndrome (5). Bleeding complications had occurred on the day of surgery in only 2 patients. 16 trials were based on malpractice claims following SP encompassing lack of informed consent (6), anosmia (4), septal perforation (2), frontobasal injury (2) and dry nose (2). Trials after LN procedures were associated exclusively with a lesion of the spinal accessory nerve (28), including lack of informed consent in 19 cases. 49 cases (69%) were decided for the defendant, 22 (31%) were decided for the plaintiff with monetary compensation in 7 of 29 AE/TE-trials, 9 of 28 LN-trials and 6 of 14 SP-trials. Lack of informed consent was not registered for AE/TE but LN (11) and SP (2). Conclusion: Complicated cases following TE, TT, ATE, SP and LN are not systematically collected in Germany. It can be assumed, that not every complicated case is published in the medical literature or law journals and therefore not obtainable for scientific research. Alleged medical malpracice is proven for less than 6% before trial stage. Approximately half of all cases result in a plaintiff verdict or settlement at court. Proper documentation of a thourough counselling, examination, indication, informed consent and follow-up assists the surgeon in litigation. An adequate complication management of PTH is essential, including instructions for the patients/parents, instructions for the medical staff and readily available surgical instruments. Successful outcome of life-threatening PTH is widely based on a proper airway management in an interdisciplinary approach. Electrosurgical tonsillectomy techniques were repeatedly labeled as a risk factor for bleeding complications following TE. Institutions should analyse the individual PTH rate on a yearly basis. Contradictory expert opinions and verdicts of the courts concerning spinal accesory nerve lesions following LN are due to a lack of a surgical standard.GMS current topics in otorhinolaryngology, head and neck surgery. 01/2013; 12:Doc08.