Comparison of postoperative pain in pediatric patients undergoing coblation tonsillectomy versus cautery tonsillectomy

Dwight T. Jones, Margaret A. Kenna, Jessica Guidi, Lin Huang, Patrick R. Johnston, Greg R. Licameli

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

15 Scopus citations


Objective. To compare postoperative pain scores between monopolar electrocautery and coblation subcapsular tonsillectomy. Study Design. Prospective double-blind randomized study. Setting. Tertiary care children's hospital. Subjects and Methods. Between December 2004 and April 2008, 61 children, ages 4 to 20 years (mean age, 10 years; SD, 4 years), were randomized to have one tonsil removed by electrocautery and the other tonsil removed by coblation. Subjects used the FACES scale to rate pain on each side immediately postoperatively, 2 days postoperatively, and 2 weeks postoperatively. Postoperative hemorrhage was also tracked. Results. Coblation tonsillectomy resulted in statistically less pain than electrocautery immediately after surgery, but this difference was not clinically significant. Conclusions. Pediatric pain is similar following monopolar electrocautery or coblation subcapsular tonsillectomy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)972-977
Number of pages6
JournalOtolaryngology - Head and Neck Surgery
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Jun 1 2011



  • Cautery
  • Coblation
  • Postoperative pain

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Otorhinolaryngology

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