There is, for some reason, an urban legend that doctors take out tonsils "at the drop of a hat." At least, some other doctors must do it. I've never run into such doctors myself.
No, not an urban legend, just outdated information. Before the 1960's, when the Doctor's word was GOD, they did take them out like that. I have never had this confirmed, but I believe that they thought the tonsils were some kind of reservoir of infection. Kid has one cold after another? Must be the tonsils, take them out. (Because, you know, it couldn't be that kids and their sometimes sketchy ideas of hygiene cause them to share germs.) Kid has a sinus infection? Must be his tonsils. Kid snores? Must be tonsils and adenoids. Any kind of upper respiratory problem was blamed on the tonsils. They would even remove the tonsils of healthy kids, because sooner or later ALL kids get colds, sore throats, ear infections, etc. and it was better to just get rid of those nasty tonsils before they caused trouble.
If you've ever read Cheaper by the Dozen
, you'll remember the chapter when the doctor took out all the kids' tonsils so that Mr. Gilbraith could film them and work out more efficient ways of doing surgery.
And in that same vein, my MIL strongarmed the doctors into doing all three of her kids at once. (So that she didn't have any of them underfoot while she threw away their blankies and other loveys.
Horrible woman.) DH was 7, his sister was 5, and brother about 2.