Sinus surgery is a use to help open the pathways of the sinuses to clear blockages especially for people with chronic sinus infection or sinusitis. This is also a treatment option for people with polyps or growth in the sinus cavity or has an abnormal sinus structure.
Who needs nasal surgery?
People with functional sinus problems like a deviated septum, enlarged nasal turbinates (within the nasal cavity), narrowing of the nasal opening, nasal polyps, or swollen nasal mucosa due to allergies or other irritants can often benefit from sinus surgery. One or more of these problems may result in severe snoring or obstruction of airflow through the nose. Doctors often first prescribe medical treatments such as saline, sprays, oral medication, and an allergist evaluation. If these treatments alone are ineffective, the next treatment option is often nasal surgery.
Nasal surgery can improve breathing, correct deformities, change the size and shape of the nose, and repair nasal injuries. As a result, this procedure can also treat obstructive sleep apnea, which is when a patient stops breathing during periods of sleep.
Surgery results and healing time
Nasal surgeries take on average two hours to complete. The healing process can take up to a year, depending on the severity of the change to the nose and surrounding areas. Patients are often up and moving about within a few days and back at work or school within a week. It is possible to experience swelling for several months and not see the full extent of the results of the surgery for up to a year or more. There is the risk of minor scarring around the base of the nose, depending on the type of surgical procedure performed. Doctors say these scars are usually not noticeable.
Expected side effects
Temporary side effects patients may experience after the surgery include a small amount of bleeding within the first few days, small burst blood vessels that may appear as small red spots on the skin, dull headache, swelling around the eyes, bruising around the eyes, puffy face; or aches around and of the nose. A splint may be used to help the nose maintain its shape, and nasal packs or soft splints may be used inside the nostrils to stabilize the septum. Splints are temporary but may cause some discomfort and some initial obstruction with breathing until they are removed. Typically splints are removed about a week after surgery. Patients are encouraged to resume normal daytime activities such as walking and spending time out of bed but are strongly discouraged from engaging in strenuous physical activities as they can increase swelling or bleeding. If significant bleeding occurs, patients should seek medical attention as soon as possible.
If you are suffering from chronic sinus infections and would like to know if sinus surgery is a treatment option for you, contact us today for a consultation with one of our surgeons.