Sinusitis, the inflammation, and swelling that typically accompanies an upper respiratory infection like cold or flu, usually runs its course in 10 days to two weeks. While it’s not an enjoyable time, you know the end is in sight.
For some people, anatomy, allergies, or other medical conditions can make sinusitis an ongoing problem, chronic blockages of the major sinuses with frequent recurrences or symptoms that never resolve.
In the worst cases, sinus surgery was the only option, physically removing tissue to ease sinus drainage. Since 2005, balloon sinuplasty has offered a minimally invasive treatment that requires no cutting of tissue or bone. Alexis Furze, M.D. specializes in balloon sinuplasty as a treatment for chronic sinusitis, an alternative to the cutting and stitching required with traditional surgical techniques.
The problems with chronic sinusitis
To be diagnosed with sinusitis, you’ll typically display symptoms for 12 weeks, much longer than a sinusitis episode that accompanies a cold. Usually, it’s because of physical barriers to sinus drainage.
Nasal polyps are benign growths that can block sinuses and nasal passages, resulting in ineffective drainage that keeps a sinus infection from clearing up. A deviated septum can create similar issues. This may be present as a congenital condition or it may be caused by damage to your nose.
Medical conditions can sometimes be the cause behind chronic sinusitis, including cystic fibrosis or other autoimmune system conditions. Hayfever can aggravate sinus blockages. Sometimes, chronic sinusitis results from several factors combining to create a bigger issue.
How balloon sinuplasty works
One of the fastest-growing treatments for chronic sinusitis, balloon sinuplasty requires no cutting or incisions. The procedure is endoscopic, using special tools to access the sinuses through the nose. A small balloon is inflated to force back swollen tissue.
This permits the sinuses to be flushed and drained, breaking the infection cycle, and allowing the remaining infection to clear. Balloon sinuplasty can be done on any or all of the three primary nasal sinuses.
The advantages of balloon sinuplasty
The primary advantage of balloon sinuplasty treatment is the lack of incisions, one of the main causes of long recovery times involved with traditional surgical techniques. You’ll be ready to return to most of your usual activities in a day or two, though you shouldn’t blow your nose or engage in strenuous work or exercise for about a week.
Most procedures can be done in Dr. Furze’s office, under local anesthetics. Balloon sinuplasty is gaining a reputation as the standard of care for chronic sinusitis and many medical insurance plans include it in their coverage. There’s little risk of complications after the procedure. Some patients experience minor bleeding and temporary swelling of the nose can occur.
Balloon sinuplasty has a high rate of success with long-lasting results. If you have issues with frequent or chronic sinusitis, contact Alexis Furze, M.D. to arrange an exam and consultation to see if this procedure is right for you. Call the appointment hotline at 949-205-7745 to book your appointment. You can be breathing easier soon.