Efficacy of postoperative follow-up telephone calls for patients who underwent adenotonsillectomy

Kristina W. Rosbe, Dwight Jones, Scharukh Jalisi, Mary Ann Bray

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

52 Scopus citations


Objective: To evaluate the efficacy and cost-effectiveness of postoperative follow-up telephone calls among pediatric patients who underwent adenotonsillectomy. Design: Prospective study with a follow-up questionnaire administered by telephone. Setting: Tertiary-care children's hospital. Patients: One hundred thirty-four children between the ages of 4 and 18 years who underwent adenotonsillectomy between December 1997 and June 1998 and did not have associated cardiac, pulmonary, bleeding, or syndromic disorders were included in this pilot study. Intervention: Parents of these patients were given the opportunity to participate in our study, and it was emphasized that, at any time during the child's care, if the parent desired a follow-up visit or if the child experienced any symptoms that caused concern, the parent should contact the clinic for a follow-up appointment. A telephone call was placed 3 to 4 weeks postoperavively by an otolaryngology nurse, and a questionnaire was filled out using the parents' responses. Main Outcome Measures: The incidence rates of voice change, velopharyngeal insufficiency, bleeding, constipation, dehydration, and pain were measured. Parent satisfaction, patient safety, and cost-benefit were also evaluated. Results: Less than 5% of patients reported temporary velopharyngeal insufficiency, while 2% of patients required operative intervention for bleeding episodes and 1% required hospitalization. Voice change, reported by approximately 70% of all patients, was the most common complaint, but it resolved in all instances. Pain was reported to be most severe on postoperative day 1. Ninety-six percent of parents requested no further follow-up visit. Conclusions: Our pilot study revealed that a follow-up telephone call is a safe and cost-effective method of postoperative management for pediatric patients who have undergone adenotonsillectomy and that this method of follow-up is also desirable to parents.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)718-721
Number of pages4
JournalArchives of Otolaryngology - Head and Neck Surgery
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2000
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Otorhinolaryngology


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