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should A SINGER have their tonsils removed?

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hi i just joined this website and i found it very interesting. i have a concern however and i was hoping someone could help me. I am singer/pianist who sings for 4-5 hours every night every day, i have been having problems vocally on and off with my range and constantly catching a cold or having sore throat. i started seeing an Ent specialist who had me on antibiotics to reduce the swelling of my tonsil, however that was working so well so i visited another Ent and to my surprise he said that i needed to take my tonsil out. i have been battling with the decision of whether to do it or not because i am afraid this will affect my vocal quality and range and ALSO i only have about 3 weeks before i have to go back to work. SO i was hoping to get some reviews on here and or to see if there were any other alternatives to tonsillectomy. Thanks! dwghtblake@yahoo.com

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Getting tonsils removed will change your resonance a bit, but occurs a couple of inches away from actual vocal cords and that's a big distance in terms of safety. If you decide to have the surgery, just tell EVERYONE on the team that you are a singer, so that when you're asleep they put the breathing tube in carefully and otherwise take extra care of your throat.

Bigger issue for your career though is WHY you are suffering such allergies and inflammation. Tonsils become a problem if they are overwhelmed and unable to help defend the body -- but that still leaves the question of why you keep getting sick. Do you perform in a place with poor ventilation? Or is there cold air-conditioning aimed right toward the piano-bench? Are you eating or breathing things that your system really doesn't like? Is there some other personal stress that keeps you vulnerable?

Think back to the last time you felt really healthy, and how your lifestyle has changed since then. Then start taking small steps and experiments to resolve whatever seems to be draining your stamina. This is a longer process than just taking antibiotics or getting tonsils out, and might benefit from working with a natural/alternative healer of some kind because conventional medicine won't have many answers for you. But for a long career these things need to be figured out. You deserve to not-struggle.

summary: Tonsil surgery might be reasonable, and is low risk for your voice assuming all goes smoothly. But consider it the beginning of your health journey, not the end.

best wishes -- and please let us know what happens!


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Thanks so much Joanna, i appreciate your help and i totally agree that i am singing too much. i wish i could reduce the hours but it's what the job requires. The thing is i work on a cruise line and i keep getting sick every contract with some sort of virus which develops into sore throat and then losing my voice. These days i find that my mucus is just resting on my vocal chords and i have to clear my throat very often and it's now harder to reach my higher notes.

i went to my Ent doctor and he said that a tonsillectomy would resolve my problems however he doesn't see a reason to have them removed at this moment, he thinks that my mucus at the back of my throat is either from acid reflux with my sinuses. The back of my throat is a little bit red at the moment but my vocal chords are fine

is there anything else that i can do on my own to climate these problems?

Thanks a lot

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