5 MISCONCEPTIONS ABOUT BALLOON SINUPLASTY
- Posted on: Jan 20 2021
You may have heard of a non-invasive procedure called balloon sinuplasty to treat chronic sinusitis. For many years, traditional sinus surgery was performed, where the sinus tissue and bone are cut and removed; this produces significant discomfort, bleeding, and poor outcomes for patients. Luckily balloon sinuplasty was created and approved by the FDA in 2005, now giving patients and doctors a much simpler and effective technique to treat blocked sinuses.
We are here to bust some misconceptions about this long-lasting, safe, and effective procedure that may help relieve you from your chronic sinusitis.
5 Misconceptions about Balloon Sinuplasty
The balloon stays in your sinuses
Many patients think the balloon remains in your sinuses (similar to balloon angioplasty for the heart). This is untrue and the balloon only stays in each sinus opening for a few seconds to effectively dilate it to the size of a normal sinus opening.
It’s not permanent.
A balloon sinuplasty is actually a long-lasting treatment for chronic sinusitis and there is a >95% cure rate. The balloon creates small micro-fractures in the opening of the sinus that are permanent. It is important for the patient to manage their allergies after the procedure to prevent swelling to return around the sinus opening. Usually, this is accomplished through the use of allergy drops to build up the patient’s immunity against allergens.
At Sinus and Snoring Specialists, the balloon sinuplasty procedure is always performed under twilight sedation, so the patient feels nothing. Local anesthesia in the nose is also used so when the patient wakes up they have minimal to no pain. Most patients don’t need any pain medication and if there’s mild discomfort, Tylenol can be used. Prescription painkillers are rarely ever needed after the balloon sinuplasty procedure.
It will help my deviated septum.
Some patients imagine the balloon also straightening their septum when it is inflated. This is untrue because the balloon is just dilating the small openings of the sinuses. The septum, which is made of cartilage and bone, would need to be corrected via septoplasty which is a separate procedure. Often a septoplasty is done in conjunction with a balloon sinuplasty to provide the patient an optimal airway.
I will have to take off a few days of work after the procedure.
The balloon sinuplasty procedure is not painful nor does it produce significant bleeding like traditional sinus surgery (where tissue and bone is cut and removed). There is no packing or splinting in the nose like Traditional Sinus Surgery. Therefore, many patients are able to work the next day. Patients only have light bleeding for less than 24 hours and just feel stuffy in their nose during the healing process. For many jobs, especially those that do not require excessive physical activity, the patient is able to work without any issues.
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