Randomized study comparing inflammatory response after tonsillectomy versus tonsillotomy. Academic Article uri icon


  • Design: Randomized, double-blind study. Setting: tertiary care academic hospital. Children under the age of 16 years with a diagnosis of obstructive sleep disordered breathing were randomly allocated into three study groups: TA with electrocautery (n = 34), PITA with CO2 laser (n = 30) and PITA with debrider (n = 28). All of the children underwent adenoidectomy with a current at the same surgical procedure. Main outcome measure: c-reactive protein level (CRP) was the primary endpoint. In addition, the following were assessed: white blood cells (WBC), neutrophils (NEU), interleukin-6 (IL-6) and tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-α). Pre- and post-procedure measurements were compared between the groups. Parents filled out a questionnaire daily during the first postoperative week assessing pain, swallowing and snoring. CRP levels ascended higher in the PITA groups after surgery (p = 0.023), WBC and NEU showed the same pattern, IL-6 levels were higher in PITA group and there was no difference in TNF-alpha levels between the two types of procedures. Postoperative pain and postoperative hemorrhage were significantly lower in the PITA groups as compared to the TA group (p = 0.01 and 0.048). PITA in comparison to TA is associated with lower morbidity; however, the inflammatory response does not differ significantly in the first 24 h after surgery. Additional long-term studies assessing efficacy of PITA are warranted. Level of evidence: Level 1, prospective randomized controlled trial.

publication date

  • May 1, 2016