What is balloon sinuplasty? Balloon sinuplasty can be used to treat sinusitis when medical therapy fails or when you experience frequent sinus infections. Sinusitis often starts as an acute infection from nasal or sinus passage swelling.
This occurs most commonly from viral infection (cold or flu). Allergies, diabetes, poor immunity, chemical irritation, such as cigarette smoke; facial trauma and upper teeth infection can lead to sinusitis. Chronic sinusitis is when symptoms have been present over 6-8 weeks. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), roughly 10 percent of the population of the United States is affected by chronic sinusitis each year.
The sinuses are air filled spaces in the cheeks, forehead and between the eyes. Swelling in the passages of the sinuses leads to blockage of air flow and mucus build-up in the sinuses. The symptoms of sinusitis can include nasal congestion, headaches, facial pain, pressure, night-time coughing, thick yellow or green nasal drainage, fatigue, bad breath, loss of smell and sometimes dizziness. Facial pain and headaches generally occur in the central forehead, between the eyes and/or above the teeth. The symptoms are worse with bending over or lying down.
Balloon sinuplasty can relieve sinus pain and pressure and reduce the frequency of sinus infections. It is typically performed in the office, using local anesthetics and mild sedation. The procedure does not involve removing any bone or sinus tissue, so there is minimal bleeding and the sinuses don’t need time to heal. A guidewire is passed into the small sinus opening and a balloon is passed over the wire.
The balloon is inflated to enlarge the sinus pathway. Many patients are able to return to their normal activities within 24 hours. Clinical research studies show that 92 percent of sinuses treated with balloon sinuplasty remained clear after two years, and 80 percent of patients remained free of symptoms of sinusitis after two years.
For many patients with chronic or recurrent sinusitis, balloon sinuplasty is a valuable minimally invasive alternative to sinus surgery. Clinical research has proven that it is a safe and effective tool for dilating blocked sinuses that have not responded to medications. Contact Tower ENT for more information (209) 216-3300.