Otolaryngology & Allergy Testing & Immunotherapy Clinic located in Mandeville, Hammond, & Slidell, LA
If you have nasal congestion and sinus pressure that never seem to go away, chances are you have chronic sinusitis, a condition that’s safely treated with a minimally invasive balloon sinuplasty. The doctors at SLENT have extensive experience performing balloon sinuplasty, a procedure that’s done in the office and produces results that last up to a year. To see if your chronic sinus inflammation can be treated with this innovative procedure, call one of the offices in Slidell, Hammond, Metairie, and Mandeville, Louisiana, or schedule an appointment online.
Balloon Sinuplasty Q & A
What is balloon sinuplasty?
Balloon sinuplasty is an in-office procedure for treating chronic sinusitis. The minimally invasive procedure is done using an endoscope or a balloon catheter, which are flexible and easy to guide through your nostril to the targeted sinus cavity.
Minimally invasive procedures cause significantly less trauma. As a result, your recovery is quicker compared to surgery, and you have less postoperative pain.
What causes chronic sinusitis?
Your sinuses are air-filled cavities inside your facial bones. Membranes inside each sinus produce mucus that drains through a small opening and flows into your nose. Normally, this mucus does the important job of moisturizing and warming the air as it goes through your nose.
Sinusitis begins when the membranes in your sinuses become inflamed due to allergies or a viral infection. The swollen membranes block the opening, trapping mucus inside the sinus, causing acute sinusitis.
When your sinusitis lasts longer than 12 weeks, you have chronic sinusitis. Chronic sinusitis is caused by inflammation that persists even though the acute infection has cleared up. In many cases, chronic sinusitis resists conventional medical treatments, making balloon sinuplasty an exceptional option.
What symptoms indicate I may need balloon sinuplasty?
If you have chronic sinusitis, you’ll experience symptoms such as:
- Nasal congestion
- Thick, discolored discharge from your nose
- Pain and pressure around your sinuses
When these symptoms don’t improve with conventional treatments, your doctor at SLENT may recommend balloon sinuplasty.
How is balloon sinuplasty performed?
Your SLENT physician applies a local anesthetic, then inserts the endoscope through a nostril. The endoscope carries a medical-grade balloon and has built-in lighting and a high-definition video camera, giving your doctor a magnified view of your nasal passageways.
After guiding the scope to the opening of your blocked sinus, your physician inflates the balloon. Pressure from the balloon reopens the sinus and the sinus is flushed to remove excess mucus. Then the balloon is deflated and removed.
The great benefit of balloon sinuplasty — beyond restoring normal sinus drainage — is that the inflated balloon restructures the shape of the opening. As a result, the sinus stays open long after the balloon is gone. For most patients, the results of a balloon sinuplasty last at least one year.
If you have chronic congestion and you’d like to learn if you’re a good candidate for balloon sinuplasty, call SLENT or schedule an appointment online.
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