New to this site - thought I'd post our experience FYI and also to see if anyone has had anything similar or even heard of such a thing?

WARNING: This may be scary to read, but it is our experience and it happened. Sorry, it's a long story.

My 16-year-old son was dx'd with Obstructive Sleep Apnea in Fall '09. Tried a few of doctor's suggestions to relieve, to no avail. Sleep Doc wanted CPAP machine to be last resort.

Went ahead with tonsillectomy on April 15/2010. Surgeon was surprised that tonsils were 3 times larger than he expected, and what he could see was "just the tip of the iceburg"; those suckers were very deep. Stayed overnight in ICU for observation - sent home next day.
The usual amount of pain and discomfort (from most of the other posts I've read) for first week (quick healers or those with little pain, count yourselves lucky!) He started bringing up a few small pieces of gunk on day 3 - ENT prescribed antibiotics, as he thought that was too soon for anything to be coming off. Borrowed a cool-mist vaporizer on 2nd day - which was a GODSEND for getting sleep! No solid foods yet. Learned quickly to avoid dairy or Ensure drinks due to major mucus.

Pain worsened Day 5 & 6.

Day 7 - started having small amount of bleeding - ENT requested he be brought into ER. Took a look and said blood clots needed to be dealt with right away - back into surgery he went (with original surgeon) for BLEED #1.

Day 8 - still in hospital - doing ok all day, but they wanted to keep him one more night for observation. Thank God, cuz around 8:30pm he started bringing up clots and back into surgery they took him for BLEED # 2 with a different, on-call surgeon ... who came out after and told us "good thing they took him in, as he was bleeding on both sides, and one side was an 'arterial pumper'". Later when he was in the Recovery room and awake, he started bleeding again from a new spot this time. He threw up a whole lot of blood which scared the c**p out of him, and his blood pressure went way up. Back right away into surgery for BLEED # 3. ICU overnight again, but now with many doctors scratching their heads and wondering what the heck was going on with him, especially the high blood pressure (new to us - we now suspect it was a product of the Apnea). They finally let him go home Day 11.

Kind of back to square one, as he now had the original tonsillectomy healing schedule PLUS the new day 7 & 8 surgeries and their schedules.

Day 14 arrived (also Day 7 past 1st bleed surgery) ... and SURPRISE he starts bleeding again. In to ER we go again, and the bleeding stops on the drive in, so I'm thinking GREAT, they'll just send us home. NOT. A different on-call ENT insists he must go back into surgery for BLEED #4 (beleive me I questioned whether we couldn't wait and see what happened and it was made very clear to me that it wasn't an option and things could go wrong quickly). Okeydokey.

It is also made very clear to us that this is pretty much unheard of - the 3rd surgeon knows of one other case - and told me that guy is just fine now. None of the nurses or interns I spoke with had ever heard of more than one bleed requiring surgery following a tonsillectomy. By now the docs are saying he's either the unluckiest tonsillectomy patient ever, or there is something else going on... like a bleeding disorder. Sent home DAY 15. Now his healing schedule is back at square one again from the most recent cauterization.

DAY 18 - more bleeding in evening (#5), back into ER, bracing ourselves for the inevitiable surgery ... but this time, the on-call ENT (surgeon #2) has J gargle with hydrogen peroxide and water, and the bleeding stops ... and we are sent home!!! YES! Obviously that one appeared different somehow than the first 4.

We are currently sitting at DAY 22.... and crossing our fingers. He is still on the painkillers and antibiotics, and still has smallish scabs and we know it could happen again, but we are doing much positive thinking. He has lost close to 30 pounds (he is 6'1" and was 209 lbs to start with). Majority of tests for bleeding disorder coming back negative, but still awaiting 2 results. Hematologist does NOT suspect a bleeding disorder, as it's rarely discovered so late as the ripe old age of 16.

As much as a hellish experience as this has been, he is already noticing less of the Apnea symptoms. It looks like summer school may need to happen, but given the scares we've had, that's just sooooo irrelevant in the big picture.

The one piece of advice I'd like to give is for anyone going into this, particularly with OSA, make sure you don't have undiagnosed hypertension that should be treated prior to surgery. We found out after the fact that our son's had been on the high end of the range, but I guess because it was still "within the normal range", it wasn't thought to be an issue or even brought to our attention. They do now think that likely contributed to his unusual case. And REALLY BAD LUCK!

Good luck - my hat is off to all of you that need to go thru this!
JM