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January 1960

Adenoidectomy—A Different Approach

Author Affiliations

Instructor in Laryngology, Jefferson Medical College, and Clinical Assistant in Otolaryngology, Curtis Clinic.

AMA Arch Otolaryngol. 1960;71(1):59-63. doi:10.1001/archotol.1960.03770010063006

Bleeding is one of the most annoying although rarely serious complications of adenoidectomy. This bleeding, occurring as it does on the operating table or several hours postoperatively, is difficult to control. Nor is hemorrhage a rare occurrence: Bellucci1 reported a series of 19,754 cases of adenotonsillectomy performed during a five-year period (1948-1952), in which there were 930 cases of primary bleeding from 24 to 48 hours after operation and 268 cases of secondary bleeding occurring from 2 to 11 days postoperatively. My own experience, before use of the technique described below, indicates occurrence of hemorrhage in about 10% of all cases. The purpose of this communication is to describe a technique, based on the anatomy of the adenoid, which has reduced the incidence of postoperative hemorrhage to about 1% in a series of some 600 cases.

The currently-accepted technique for adenoidectomy was clearly described by Lucian W. Alexander,2