Anti-inflammatory drugs and perioperative bleeding

There is always a concern with children bleeding post tonsillectomy. “Non steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) are used for pain relief following tonsillectomy in children. Bleeding is a recognized complication of this procedure and NSAIDs can interfere with blood clotting, so there has been concern that these drugs will increase the risk of bleeding. If bleeding is severe this may result in the child being re-admitted to hospital, having a blood transfusion or returning to theatre.”

The enclosed Cochrane Review was intent on establishing  whether these drugs are safe to use in children having their tonsils out. The enclosed review concluded “there is insufficient evidence to exclude an increased risk of bleeding when NSAIDs are used in paediatric tonsillectomy. They do however confer the benefit of a reduction in vomiting.”

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