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Tonsillectomy is a common, low-risk procedure. Post-tonsillectomy haemorrhage remains the most serious complication. Recent nationwide studies in the UK have identified an increased morbidity and mortality for both high-risk and low-risk elective general surgery performed at the weekend.
Data for tonsillectomies performed at a district general hospital over a three-year period were retrospectively reviewed. The same group of surgeons performed elective tonsillectomies on both weekends and weekdays. All patients who developed a post-tonsillectomy haemorrhage were identified and the day of original operation was noted.
Between 2010 and 2013, 2208 (94.00 per cent) elective tonsillectomies were performed on a weekday and 141 (6.00 per cent) were performed on the weekend. Post-tonsillectomy haemorrhages occurred in 104 patients (4.71 per cent) who underwent their procedure on a weekday and in 10 patients (7.09 per cent) who had their surgery at the weekend (p = 0.20).
There is no difference in the rate of post-tonsillectomy haemorrhage for procedures performed on a weekday or weekend.
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