No consensus exists regarding the best method of tonsillectomy. This report concerns two popular methods: 1. electrocautery excision and 2. dissection/snare followed by point coagulation of bleeding sites. To compare these methods, a prospective, randomized, single-blinded study was conducted in which 28 patients had one tonsil removed by dissection/snare and selective cautery of bleeders and the other removed by the electrocautery. Operative time and blood loss were compared. Patients rated the severity of their pain and blood loss postoperatively. Intraoperative bleeding was significantly less on the side of cautery excision, although the operative time was longer. At follow-up, pain was rated worse on the side of cautery excision.
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