When you’re feeling poorly because of a problem with your nose or mouth your entire life just doesn’t feel the same. Our sense of smell helps us enjoy life — we can take in the aromas of our favorite foods and environments but it’s also is a warning system, alerting us to danger signals such as gas leaks, spoiled food and fire. Sinusitis can be acute and short-lasting or a chronic recurring problem but either way it can debilitate our lives. Snoring problems can not only steal a good night’s sleep, but also affect the ones you love most.
Nearly everyone has made the trip down the cough and cold aisle at the supermarket to see an arsenal of sinus symptom relief. Dealing with the symptoms of sinusitis can be confusing and often many people might not even know they have the condition, but rather they assume the symptoms are all part of a nasty cold. Regardless your unique circumstance we can help you find a solution.
SINUTITISSYMPTOMS OF SINUSITIS : NASAL CONGESTION | FACIAL PAIN | NASAL DRAINAGE | HEADACHE | INFLAMMATION | PAIN IN UPPER TEETH FATIGUE | SORE THROAT | BAD BREATH It’s good to recognize the common symptoms of sinusitis which include cough, sore throat, headache, fever, loss of smell and stuffy nose. These symptoms can occur when the mucus lining of the sinuses becomes inflamed due to bacterial, viral or fungal infection. Often time home remedy is the best option because a virus must run its course. However, there are times when a trip to the doctor’s office is prudent. These times include when your symptoms don’t improve or they worsen within a few days, if you have a history of chronic sinusitis or a high fever. Diagnosis & Treatment When you see your doctor we may perform a physical exam, nasal endoscopy, CT or MRI scan. You can also expect a sinus culture or we may need to perform allergy skin tests. Depending on the root cause of your symptoms treatments can include nasal spray, over-the-counter pain killer and in some cases antibiotics. If your sinusitis was brought on by allergies then allergy immunotherapy shots or drops may be another option. Learn more about our Allergy Services
NOSE BLEEDS (EPISTAXIS)If you have a nose bleed it’s important to remember most times the underlying problem isn’t as bad as you might think. The condition is very common so don’t be too alarmed. Tracing the cause of a nosebleed can be difficult. Symptoms & Causes If you are exposed to dry, cold climates in the winter months the blood vessel on the nasal septum can suffer trauma and begin to bleed. Nasal and sinus infection, allergies, any type of physical trauma, and even vigorous nose blowing can also cause your nose to begin to bleed. You’ll want to treat the nosebleed at home by tipping your head forward and pinching your nostrils together to stop the bleeding. If repeated episodes of bleeding occur, you bruise easily, or have liver or kidney disease you need to see your doctor right away. Diagnosis & Treatment Your doctor will need to know about your medical history and about how long the nosebleeds have been happening We may also perform a physical exam and order imaging tests depending on what may be the underlying cause of your symptoms. Prevention Prevent nosebleeds by drinking plenty of water and using a humidifier in your home. Don’t pick your nose or blow your nose too hard because any added trauma on the nose may lead to nosebleeds.
LOSS OF SMELL, ANOSMIA"Officially called anosmia, the loss of smell can deprive you of the everyday joys of great cooking or your favorite walk outdoors. Some degree of loss in your ability to smell comes with age, other times it can be temporary if related to nasal congestion or allergies. Finding the cause of your smelling loss is important to reaching a solution. The common cold, hay fever, rhinitis, certain medications, and tumors of the nose or brain could all be the culprit behind your loss of smell. Schedule an appointment with our physicians if your degree of smelling loss worsens or it doesn’t go away after a couple weeks. If you have other inexplicable symptoms your condition could be much larger than smelling loss. Diagnosis & Treatment Your physician will look at your medical history and ask you questions related to your loss in smell. He or she might recommend a CT or MRI scan, a nasal endoscopy or possibly an x-ray of the skull.
SNORINGSnoring is a widespread problem many couples must deal with in order to get a good night’s rest. Most cases are mild and only occur occasionally, but some cases are severe and can cause serious health risks. The reason why certain people snore can relate to the anatomy of the mouth and throat. When the airway passages are narrow the vibration can create the sounds associated with snoring. Other causes can include being overweight, consuming alcohol, problems with the nasal cavity or sleep apnea. Other symptoms arising from a night of heavy snoring can include sore throat, high blood pressure, poor concentration and drowsiness. Only your doctor and specialist will be able to trace your symptoms to diagnose the cause and offer the right medical solution. Diagnosis & Treatment Your doctor will first likely ask you some questions about the degree and frequency of snoring episodes. He or she may perform a physical evaluation and could order a CT scan to look for obstructions of your airway. We may recommend a sleep study in which trained professionals will evaluate your sleep patterns in a controlled environment. Depending upon the results from the evaluations various treatment options are available. Home remedies include sleeping on your side, avoiding meals, snacks or alcohol a few hours before bed and losing weight to open up airway restriction. If these solutions are not working your doctor might suggest looking at surgical options. Dental mouthpieces, pressurized masks and traditional surgeries like tonsillectomy or somnoplasty might be solutions.
NASAL OBSTRUCTIONNasal obstructions are blockages of the nasal cavity that impede airflow in and out of the nose. Either one or both nostrils may be affected. Most nasal obstructions are temporary, caused by colds, allergies, sinus infections, or medications, while others require medical intervention. Types of Nasal Obstruction Deviated nasal septum. The nasal septum is the wall-like structure that divides the left and right nostrils. A deviated septum refers to one that is crooked. This is hardly rare; it is estimated that 80 percent of people have septal deviations to some degree. Symptoms include difficulty breathing through the nose (especially one nostril) and a runny nose. Inferior turbinate hypertrophy. The nasal cavity contains bony structures called turbinates. These are susceptible to irritation from allergies and dust, which cause swelling and breathing difficulties. Choanal atresia. This is a congenital defect in which excess tissue in the nasal airway causes a partial or full blockage, resulting in difficulty breathing. Nasal polyps.
SEPTOPLASTY: SURGICAL PROCEDURE TO CORRECT A DEVIATED SEPTUMThe septum is the wall of bone and cartilage that divides your nose into two separate nostrils. A deviated septum occurs when your septum is moved to one side of your nose. Some people are born with a deviated septum, but it can also be caused by an injury to your nose. Most people with a deviated septum have one nasal passage that’s much smaller than the other. This can cause difficulty breathing. Other symptoms of a deviated septum may include frequent nosebleeds and facial pain. Surgery is the only way to fix a deviated septum. Septoplasty is a surgical procedure to correct a deviated septum. Septoplasty straightens the septum, allowing for better airflow through your nose. Septoplasty procedure A septoplasty takes anywhere from 30 to 90 minutes to complete, depending on the complexity of the condition. You’ll be under either local or general anesthesia, depending on what you and your doctor decide is best for you. In a typical procedure, the surgeon makes an incision on one side of your nose to access the septum. They next lift up the mucous membrane, which is the protective covering of the septum. Then the deviated septum is moved into the right position. Any barriers, such as extra pieces of bone or cartilage, are removed. The last step is the repositioning of the mucous membrane. You may need stitches to hold the septum and membrane in place. However, packing the nose with cotton is sometimes enough to keep them in position. LEARN MORE ABOUT RISKS AND RECOVERY
TURBINATE DISORDERSTurbinates, which are also called nasal concha or conchae (plural), are shell-shaped networks of bones, vessels, and tissue within the nasal passageways. These structures are responsible for warming, humidifying, and filtering the air we breathe. Normally there are three turbinates including the superior (upper), middle, and inferior (lower) turbinates. However, occasionally you can have a fourth turbinate (called the supreme turbinate) which is situated higher than the superior turbinate. In between each turbinate is space (known as meati), each with a name that coincides with the name of the turbinate that is directly above the space. These spaces form our nasal passageways which direct air flow through our nose. The nasal turbinates can be associated with several disorders. Oftentimes, the symptom associated with these disorders is congestion. Turbinate disorders include: The common cold: We have all experienced problems with our nasal turbinates when we suffer the congestion of the common cold. Allergies Sleep apnea: Abnormalities in the nasal turbinates is one of the causes of sleep apnea. Concha Bullosa: Concha bullosa is a fairly common medical condition in which there is an air pocket (pneumatization) in the middle meatus. This air pocket can lead to inadequate drainage of the sinuses and subsequent sinus infections. Nasal valve collapse: The nasal valve is the narrowest part of the nasal airway with the lower conchae making up part of this structure. This airway may become narrowed even further (nasal valve collapse) due to trauma, a deviated nasal septum, or due to rhinoplasty (plastic surgery on the nose.) Auditory tube dysfunction: Enlargements or other problems with the turbinates is one of the causes of auditory tube dysfunction (also called eustachian tube dysfunction.) Choanal Atresia: Choanal atresia is a blockage of the nasal passages by tissue often present from birth, and can affect the development of the lower and middle turbinates. Correcting Turbinate Disorders Many turbinate disorders resolve on their own, but occasionally treatment is needed to correct the problem. When turbinate disorders need to be corrected, a turbinate reduction can be performed during endoscopic sinus surgery. This procedure requires general anesthesia and is typically performed in a same day surgery clinic.
NASAL FRACTURESInjuries to the nose are relatively common; in cases of facial trauma, nasal fractures account for approximately 40 percent of bone injuries. Fights and sports injuries account for most nasal fractures in adults, followed by falls and vehicle crashes. Play and sports account for most nasal fractures in children. Nasal fractures may occur in isolation or in association with other facial injuries. Furthermore, many nasal fractures go undiagnosed and untreated because some patients do not seek medical care.. Fractures that are more than two days old will have substantial edema and should be seen urgently for evaluation. The relative ease by which epistaxis can occur with minor trauma is explained by the dense and redundant vascular network that supplies the nose. This plexus, known as Kiesselbach’s area, is responsible for the vast majority of normal epistaxis. However, bleeding as a result of nasal fracture usually originates from other locations within the nose. For example, profuse anterior bleeding may originate from the anterior ethmoid artery (a branch of the ophthalmic artery), while posterior bleeding is more likely to arise from a branch of the sphenopalatine artery. Arterial ligation may be necessary if packing fails to control bleeding. In such cases, early consultation with an otolaryngologist is indicated.
BALLOON SINUS SURGERY
IN OFFICE SINUS BALLOON DILATION
What is Balloon Sinus Dilation?
Balloon Sinus Dilation is a new surgical procedure that can be performed in an office setting for treatment of chronic sinusitis. It is a quick, safe and minimally invasive procedure, performed under local anesthesia. A small balloon is inserted into the nose using an endoscope and video camera. The balloon is then inflated to dilate and open the sinus pathway and allow for better drainage from the sinus cavity.
The recovery period is generally 1-2 days and is appropriate for patients with chronic sinus symptoms who have not responded well to treatment with medications like antibiotics, allergy medications or nasal steroid sprays. It differs from traditional functional endoscopic sinus surgery (FESS), which is usually performed in an outpatient surgery center setting and involves general anesthesia. Balloon procedures can often be done in conjunction with other nasal/sinus procedures such as a septoplasty, turbinate resection or polypectomy.
While some insurance companies still consider this procedure a non-covered service, most insurance companies, including Medicare, BlueCross, Aetna, UnitedHealthCare, Humana, Firstcare, UMC Team Choice and many others, do cover this procedure.
" One benefit of sinus balloon dilation is that patient’s often have a reduced out of pocket cost associated with performing this procedure in an office setting. Traditional functional endoscopic sinus surgery (FESS) requires the use of an outpatient surgical facility and anesthesiologist, in addition to the otolaryngologist performing the surgery. With in-office balloon dilation surgery, there are no facility or anesthesia charges. This procedure is not the right for everyone, but is an option for many depending on the underlying causes of symptoms."
To see if you are a candidate or learn more about this option schedule an appointment today.