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  • Q&A with Australian Health Practitioners

    How many times should my 5 year old son have tonsillitis before they are best removed?

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  • Professor Paul Walker OAM

    Ear Nose and Throat (ENT) Surgeon

    After graduating in medicine and surgery from the University of NSW in 1982, Conjoint Professor Paul Walker was awarded his Fellowship of the Royal Australasian … View Profile

    Most studies about repeated episodes of tonsillitis consider tonsillectomy as an option if the child is having 4-5 episodes per year for two years, or 6-7 in a single year, or 3 per year for 3 years. Other factors to consider include associated sleep disordered breathing, the severity of the episodes and response to treatment, spread to siblings, time off school for the child, time off work for the parents, reactions to antibiotics, and other co-existing illnesses such as diabetes. Your family doctor, or a specialist paediatric ENT surgeon, can discuss the options with you.

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