Impact of tonsillectomy on pediatric psychological status

Dong Young Kim, Yoon Chan Rah, Dae Woo Kim, Si Whan Kim, Doo Hee Han, Il Gyu Kong, Hee Jeong Yoo, Jeong Hyun Kim, Yang Gi Min, Chul Hee Lee, Chae Seo Rhee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


Objective: Tonsillectomy is one of the most commonly performed procedures in children. However, parents often hesitate to agree to the procedure because of concerns of the possible harmful impact on their child's psychological health. The present study was performed to examine the short-term psychological impact on children who had undergone tonsillectomy. Methods: Forty-three pediatric patients aged 3-11 years who underwent tonsillectomy were enrolled in the study. Postoperative pain was assessed using a 10-point visual analog scale (VAS) on postoperative days 1, 2, 7, and 21. The Korean version of the Child Behavior Checklist (K-CBCL) was given to the parents of the children to evaluate the psychosocial effect of tonsillectomy on the preoperative day and on postoperative day 21. Results: There were no significant differences in postoperative pain according to age, tonsil size, degree of adhesion, or operation time. There was no significant relationship between postoperative pain score and K-CBCL score. Sociality, total behavioral problems, externalizing problems, internalizing problems, anxiety/depression, social immaturity, and emotional lability domain scores on the K-CBCL were improved significantly. Conclusions: Improvements in general emotional and social status were observed at 3 weeks after tonsillectomy. Tonsillectomy itself does not have a harmful effect on children's psychological status.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1359-1363
Number of pages5
JournalInternational Journal of Pediatric Otorhinolaryngology
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - 2008 Sept


  • K-CBCL
  • Pain measurement
  • Psychology
  • Tonsillectomy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Otorhinolaryngology


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