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2.5: Data Dive- Tonsillectomy Trends

  • Page ID
    46645
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    Overview:

    Tonsils (specifically the palatine tonsils) are a pair of soft tissue masses that vary in size from person to person, located adjacent to the throat (pharynx). Tonsils are part of the lymphatic organ system, which aids in fighting infections alongside the immune system. Like lymph nodes, tonsils can swell in response to infection. In the height of its popularity in the 1930's, tonsillectomies were viewed essential by the medical community because swelling was viewed as a result of disease rather than a physiological response to infection. Between the 1940's and 1970's evidence began accumulating that there was a correlation between tonsillectomies and contracting bulbar poliomyelitis (aka polio). In the 1970's, evidence then started accumulating that tonsillectomies didn’t significantly decrease contracting sore throats and other throat infections as originally thought. As such, tonsillectomy rates have declined as scientific method based research guided the medical community to enforce stricter policies on when the procedure is appropriate. Figure 1.2.5.a below is indicates tonsillectomy rates in Scotland for 20+ years:

    Line graph illustrating tonsillectomy and tonsillitis rates in Scotland over the years.
    Figure \(\PageIndex{a}\) Scotland tonsillectomy and tonsillitis trends from 1993 to 2016. Graph created by Rachel Schleiger (CC-BY-NC) modified from data in Douglas CM, Altmyer U, Cottom L, Young D, Redding P, and Clark LJ. 2019.

    Questions:

    1. What kind of graph is this?
    2. What is the independent (explanatory) variable and the dependent (response) variable?
    3. What question(s) are the authors trying to answer with this graph?
    4. Describe the trend you see for tonsillectomies and tonsillitis from 1993 to 2016.
    5. In 1998 new policies were put in place restricting when a tonsillectomy could take place. How did this affect the trends after 1998?
    6. What does the results of this graph make you curious about?

     

    Raw Data For Above Graph(s)

    Table \(\PageIndex{a}\) Raw data for Scotland tonsillectomy and tonsillitis trends from 1993 to 2016. Graph created by Rachel Schleiger (CC-BY-NC) modified from data in Douglas CM, Altmyer U, Cottom L, Young D, Redding P, and Clark LJ. 2019.

    Years Tonsillectomy Count Tonsillitis Count
    1993/1994 185 63
    1994/1995 175 65
    1995/1996 170 80
    1996/1997 168 100
    1997/1998 165 125
    1998/1999 155 125
    1999/2000 120 115
    2000/2001 90 100
    2001/2002 70 88
    2002/2003 100 120
    2003/2004 85 110
    2004/2005 90 115
    2005/2006 98 135
    2006/2007 90 135
    2007/2008 93 148
    2008/2009 90 135
    2009/2010 90 130
    2010/2011 90 128
    2011/2012 85 128
    2012/2013 95 135
    2013/2014 93 135
    2014/2015 87 150
    2015/2016 86 153

    Attribution:

    Rachel Schleiger (CC-BY-NC)

     


    This page titled 2.5: Data Dive- Tonsillectomy Trends is shared under a not declared license and was authored, remixed, and/or curated by Melissa Ha and Rachel Schleiger (ASCCC Open Educational Resources Initiative) .

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