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Information from Your Doctor
If a child is stated with the diagnosis “adenoids”, parents have lots of questions to ask.
Each person has a pharyngeal tonsil in his nasal pharyngeal arch. It consists of lymphoid tissue, conducting a protective function. The discharge is considered to be a hypertrophy of a pharyngeal tonsil. At first, Danish doctor Myers described such kind of abnormality in 1873; the term “adenoid” belongs to his research as well.
The hypertrophy of adenoids often occurs at the age of 3 – 15 years, but it can appear at a much younger age or even adults can have it. The reason of the hypertrophy is usually the state of chronic inflammation, congenital predisposition or allergic reaction of the organism.
The enlargement of a pharyngeal tonsil can cause a range of discharges of a local or common way. Adenoids, being a mechanical barrier, make nasal breathing difficult; so a child tries to breathe with a mouth. The result is a disorder of blood circulation in the mucosa of a nose, decreasing its resistance to infections. The non-adopted mucosa of pharynx and pharyngeal tonsils undergo an extra effort, and such children often get sick with tonsillitis. A long course of illness makes the development of a facial skeleton abnormal. In this way the diagnosis can be stated with an outer examination of a patient; the face is prolonged, the upper jaw looks longer, cone-like, the mouth is half opened, upper front teeth grow in disorder, leaning forward.
Adenoids in a nasal pharyngeal arch often worsen the function of Eustachian tubes, causing the blockage of ears and decreasing hearing. The hypertrophy of adenoids negatively affects the development of sounds and speech on the whole. Apart from local discharges, the enlargement of adenoids can cause general reaction: headache, dizziness, insomnia, absent-mindedness, a slight rise of temperature. Adenoids are not the reason, but can lead to such diseases as enuresis, asthma, worsening them. Chronic inflammation of a pharyngeal tonsil affects the allergis of an organism and is a source of constant infection in the faring.
A slight enlargement of adenoids – the first degree – and as the beginning step of treatment of adenoids of the second degree, the medicamentous therapy is recommended; it is directed to the decreasing of inflammation of a pharyngeal tonsil. Complex anti-inflammatory drops, anti-allergic tablets and vitamins are prescribed. Adenoids of the third degree, and if the medicamentous treatment of adenoids of the second degree is not effective, the operation “adenoidectomy” recommended. It is made in modern medical centers under general anesthesia with the help of a special ring-form scalpel – Beckman’s ring curette. The complications of this operation are rare, and a patient, as a rule, can be let home on the same day, after the observation in the surgical ward during 3 – 4 hours.
Dr. Toshchakova, Elena P., M.D.
E.N.T. Specialist/G.P. of InterMedCenter
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