Avoidance of primary post-tonsillectomy hemorrhage in a teaching program.
OBJECTIVE: To determine the incidence of primary post-tonsillectomy hemorrhage in a teaching institution by using a uniform technique, including a 3-minute relaxation of retraction before case termination and the use of bismuth subgallate. DESIGN: Case series. SETTING: Tertiary care academic pediatric center. PATIENTS: A 7-year retrospective study was performed by using the medical records of 1286 children without a bleeding abnormality who underwent tonsillectomy (with or without adenoidectomy). A uniform technique, proposed to reduce hemorrhage, was used for 705 children and was not used for 581 children. RESULTS: No episodes of primary hemorrhage (onset < or = 24 hours after surgery) occurred, and the incidence of delayed hemorrhage (onset >24 hours after surgery) was 1.1% in the study group. The primary hemorrhage rate of the study group was significantly lower (P = .007) than the rate for the reference group (0.0% vs 1.0%), as was the total hemorrhage rate (1.1% vs 4.1%) and the delayed hemorrhage rate (1.1% vs 3.1%). CONCLUSION: A uniform technique including the use of bismuth subgallate and reassessment of the tonsillar fossae after a 3-minute observation period reduces the incidence of primary tonsillar hemorrhage in a teaching institution setting.
Volume / Issue
Start / End Page
International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)