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Balloon Sinus Dilation

Answers to common questions about sinuses and sinusitis.

Dr. Wenzel's approach to medical therapy.

View the various treatments for sinusitis.

Minimally Invasive Sinus Surgery using Balloon Dilation

Our practice has more than 5 years of experience with balloon sinus dilation procedures, including balloon dilation performed in our office without general anesthesia (in select patients). 

In the past, many patients have chosen not to have sinus surgery due to fears about pain, the recovery period, and other concerns raised by those that have had the traditional sinus surgery in the operating room under general anesthesia. Recent advancements in balloon sinus dilation technology have allowed treatment in the office as an option for some patients. At Western Carolina Ear, Nose, and Throat Specialists, we have have offered this option to select patients over the past 3 years.

 

The technique of balloon sinus dilation has been very successful and safe, with over 300,000 patients, 90,000 sinuses, and over 40,000 in-office patients having been treated across the country. Many patients have the procedure performed and return to normal activities the following day with minimal discomfort. In a recently published study, 90% of patients treated said they would recommend it to friends and family. Please remember that not all patients are candidates for this procedure and this may only be decided by one of our physicians after thorough evaluation of the clinical condition.​

Nasal Irrigation

In the past, many patients have chosen not to have sinus surgery due to fears about pain, the recovery period, and other concerns raised by those that have had the traditional sinus surgery in the operating room under general anesthesia. Recent advancements in balloon sinus dilation technology have allowed treatment in the office as an option for some patients. At Western Carolina Ear, Nose, and Throat Specialists, we have have offered these options to select patients over the past 3 years.

 

  • Nasal Irrigator Device​

  • Nasal saline irrigation in treatment of sinusitis

There are a variety of nasal saline delivery devices and irrigation devices available. Western Carolina Ear, Nose, and Throat Specialists does not sell these devices or promote any particular device. They are available at your local pharmacy or order online.

Medical Therapy

 

Sinusitis Treatment:

Dr. Wenzel's Approach to Medical Therapy

At Western Carolina ENT Specialists we follow the established clinical guidelines for treating sinusitis. Our first line treatment is medical therapy—which may include a range of medications designed to address your particular illness and symptoms.

 

Depending on your needs, Dr. Wenzel may recommend:

Nasal steroids for treatment of sinusitis

Nasal steroid sprays can decrease the swelling in the mucous membrane lining of the sinuses, which can help temporarily relieve symptoms. Some of our patients are reluctant to take medications containing steroids. Steroids can have side effects when taken over a longer period of time. You can find out more about steroid sprays in the package insert, or discuss possible side effects during your visit with Dr. Wenzel.

Antibiotics and sinusitis

If sinus inflammation has led to the development of a bacterial infection, we may prescribe antibiotics to deal with symptoms related to that infection. The antibiotic may be chosen based on a culture done in the office.

Decongestants and other medical management options

Decongestant nose drops or nasal sprays aim to soothe the mucous membranes and reduce swelling. This may make it easier to breathe through your nose. Oral decongestants may help reduce swelling to promote drainage. Nasal saline rinses or sprays help decrease the thickness of mucus and promote drainage and cleansing of the nasal cavity and sinuses. Other nasal spray medications like antihistamine sprays may also help reduce swelling from allergies and rhinitis. Each of these therapies will be recommended bases on your particular history and exam findings.

When Medical Therapy Fails—Advanced Treatment Options at Western Carolina ENT Specialists

We see many patients who suffer from chronic or recurrent acute sinusitis for whom medical therapy fails or only provides temporary relief. For these patients, we have developed expertise in more advanced surgical treatment options, including:

  • Office balloon sinus dilation

  • Endoscopic sinus surgery

Your insurance companies may have guidelines that need to be followed when recommending these options in order receive coverage and these guidelines will be reviewed at our practice and preauthorization obtained where necessary. 

Treatments

 

In-Office Sinus Dilation has been successfully performed in our office for over 4 years with excellent results.

 

Office sinus dilation is a minimally invasive option that can be performed by Dr. Wenzel right here, in our offices. The goal of office sinus dilation is to reshape anatomy to expand sinus pathways and restore drainage. Here's how it works:

The procedure utilizes small balloons placed in key places in the nose and sinus, which are then dilated to expand the sinus pathways. It may be an effective, lasting option for some patients whose symptoms do not resolve with medication.

The benefits of office sinus dilation include:

  • Delivers instant, lasting relief (1.2)

  • Convenient, comfortable office procedure (3)

  • Quick recovery—most patients return to normal activity in 24 hours (4)

  • May reduce healthcare costs

Discuss office sinus dilation with Dr. Christopher Wenzel today!

Dr. Christopher Wenzel is a trained and experienced user of office sinus dilation technologies. Make an appointment at our office today to determine if balloon sinus dilation is right for you.

How BSD Works.jpg

In-Office Sinus Dilation has been successfully performed in our office for over 4 years with excellent results.

 

Office sinus dilation is a minimally invasive option that can be performed by Dr. Wenzel right here, in our offices. The goal of office sinus dilation is to reshape anatomy to expand sinus pathways and restore drainage. Here's how it works:

The procedure utilizes small balloons placed in key places in the nose and sinus, which are then dilated to expand the sinus pathways. It may be an effective, lasting option for some patients whose symptoms do not resolve with medication.

The benefits of office sinus dilation include:

  • Delivers instant, lasting relief (1.2)

  • Convenient, comfortable office procedure (3)

  • Quick recovery—most patients return to normal activity in 24 hours (4)

  • May reduce healthcare costs

Discuss office sinus dilation with Dr. Christopher Wenzel today!

Dr. Christopher Wenzel is a trained and experienced user of office sinus dilation technologies. Make an appointment at our office today to determine if balloon sinus dilation is right for you.

Western Carolina Ear, Nose, and Throat Specialists & Center for Hearing - Balloon Sinus Dilation

Article references:

 

1. Stankiewicz J, Truitt T, Atkins J, Winegar B, Cink P, Raviv J, Henderson D, Tami T. Two-year results: transantral balloon dilation of the ethmoid infundibulum. Int Forum Allergy Rhinol. 2012 May; 2(3): 199-206.

2. Stankiewicz J, Tami T, Truitt T, Atkins J, Liepert D, Winger B. Transantral, endoscopically guided balloon dilatation of the ostiomeatal complex for chronic rhinosinusitis under local anesthesia. Am J of Rhinology. 2009 May-June; 321-327.

3. Gould, J. In-office balloon dilation: Procedure techniques and outcomes using a malleable multi-sinus dilation tool. ENT Journal. Vendome Healthcare Media, 19 Dec 2012.

4. Stankiewicz J, Truitt T, Atkins J, Winegar B, Cink P, Raviv J, Henderson D, Tami T. Two-year results: transantral balloon dilation of the ethmoid infundibulum. Int Forum Allergy Rhinol. 2012 May; 2(3): 199-206.

For some, medical therapy will not provide lasting relief from the symptoms of chronic or recurrent sinusitis. In this situation, balloon sinus dilation may not be an option.

In these instances, our doctors may suggest endoscopic sinus surgery (ESS). The goal of ESS, like balloon sinus dilation, is to expand the sinus drainage pathways to help restore drainage and heal the sinus mucosa.

Western Carolina Ear, Nose, and Throat Specialists & Center for Hearing - Balloon Sinus Dilation vs. Endoscopic Sinus Surgery

How endoscopic sinus surgery works

A doctor uses an endoscope, inserted through your nostrils, to view the passageways and sinus openings, and a series of micro-cutting instruments to remove obstructive or abnormal tissue. This tissue removal expands the openings to the sinuses and the pathways through which sinuses drain, helping clear sinuses and promote healing.

Clinical benefits of endoscopic sinus surgery

In multiple studies, patients who receive functional endoscopic sinus surgery show a statistically significant improvement in symptoms and quality of life following surgery. (1)

There are a number of approaches to ESS. Should you be a candidate for ESS, our doctors at Western Carolina Ear, Nose, and Throat Specialists will discuss the option they recommend for you, as well as the risks associated with ESS.

Recovery from endoscopic sinus surgery

Recovery times for ESS vary, based on the extent of the procedure. Many people return to normal activities within one to two weeks following surgery. (2)

Article references:

1. Impact of functional endoscopic sinus surgery on symptoms and quality of life in chronic rhino sinusitis. Damm M, Quante G, Jungehuelsing M, Stennart E. Laryngoscope. 2002 Feb: 112(2): 310-5

2. Pain treatment and recovery after endoscopic sinus surgery. Kemppainen TP, Tuomilehto H, Kokki H, Seppa J, Nuutinen J. Laryngoscope. 2009 May-June: 321-327

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