Nasal and sinus conditions can have a severe impact on your life. Your sense of smell is vital in allowing you to enjoy the pleasurable things in life – beautiful scents, delicious foods – and to warn you of dangers. Blocked nasal passages can leave you feeling miserable and affect your ability to breathe, and can lead to problems such as snoring and sleep apnea. When medical treatments are ineffective, a variety of surgical procedures are available to achieve positive results. These include:
- Sinus Surgery. Sinus surgery is a procedure in which sinus tissue is removed to open up the sinus cavities, allowing fluids to drain and preventing infection. It is useful for patients with chronic sinusitis that doesn’t respond to medical treatment. The most common type of surgery utilizes endoscopy for more accurate results with less risk of side effects such as swelling, bleeding, and discomfort.
- Sinuplasty. Another type of endoscopic surgical procedure for the treatment of blocked sinuses involves insertion of a balloon catheter into the sinus cavity. Once it’s in position, the balloon is inflated, enlarging the sinus opening and allowing for drainage. Again, this is an option for those with chronic sinus infections that aren’t cleared up medically.
- Posttraumatic Nasal Surgery. Those who have suffered a nasal fracture due to trauma can benefit from posttraumatic nasal surgery, a reconstructive procedure that attempts to correct nasal deformities. Often, the operation involves repairing both bone and cartilage in order to correct unsightly defects and to allow for unobstructed breathing while reducing the incidences of nasal conditions such as sinus infections.
- Nasal Polyps. Nasal polyps are noncancerous growths that form in the lining of the nasal passages or sinuses. They resemble teardrops or grapes, and typically occur as the result of asthma, allergies, or sinus infections. They cause allergy-like symptoms including runny nose, congestion, postnasal drip, and loss of smell. While medications are often effective, endoscopic surgery is sometimes required to remove polyps.