If medical treatments do not help, surgery may be necessary to open the sinus cavities and allow air to enter and drain the sinuses of mucus and infection. This is especially important if there are structural problems inside the nose and sinuses, such as deviated septum and nasal polyps. Long term management of allergies is often necessary to prevent a recurrence of the sinusitis.
Surgery of the Sinuses is performed to relieve inflammation and infection. The passages from the nose into a sinus allow air to enter the sinus and secretions to flow out. Obstruction of the flow of air into or blockage of the exit of mucus out of a sinus can lead to infection, pain, swelling of the delicate tissue of the nose and blockage of breathing. More serious infections can result in thinning of the bone of the sinus, polyps due to excessively swollen lining tissue and even extension of infection into the eye or brain. The purpose of sinus surgery is to prevent these complications and restore the normal functioning of the sinuses.
Sinus surgery involves the use of endoscopes, small telescopes that Dr. Volpi uses to see into the sinus cavities and remove inflamed tissue blocking the sinus openings. This allows the sinus to heal and restore function. It is generally performed in the operating room under anesthesia; the patient can be discharged on the same day. Dr. Volpi uses the latest technology to avoid injury to the delicate sinus and nasal lining for a quicker recovery. These advances include:
- Image guided surgery allows better intraoperative visualization and reduces blood loss and injury to the delicate sinus linings.
- Balloon Sinuplasty is a minimally invasive procedure using a tiny balloon that Dr. Volpi uses to gently stretch open the sinus openings with a tiny inflatable balloon. In some cases the procedure can be performed in the office, avoiding the need for hospitalization, general anesthesia and a prolonged hospitalization. Use of the balloon may eliminate the need for cutting out tissue and may reduce complications.
- Post operative healing is further enhanced and quickened by the use of hyaluronic gels. It has been shown to speed healing and allow an easier recovery after surgery without nasal packing. Scar tissue closure of the widened sinus openings is less likely to occur with the use of hyaluronic gel.