A statement from The American Academy of Otolaryngology – Head and Neck Surgery:
We, too, are in favor of evidence-based medicine that supports quality patient care. President Obama’s statement highlights the complexity of medical decisions like this. However, the AAO-HNS is disappointed by the President’s portrayal of the decision making processes by the physicians who perform these surgeries. In many cases, tonsillectomy may be a more effective treatment, and less costly, than prolonged or repeated treatments for an infected throat.
For the past several years, the Academy has been developing clinical guidelines based on evidence and outcomes research, including ‘Quality of Life after Tonsillectomy,’ a January 2008 supplement to the journal Otolaryngology—Head and Neck Surgery. We are in agreement with the President’s statement that physicians, patients, and hospitals should make the decisions, based on the evidence, about what’s best for patient care.