HANNIBAL, Mo., Jan. 29, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Sinusitis, an inflammation of the sinuses that occurs with an infection from a virus, bacteria, or fungus, is one of the most common reasons for visits to primary care physicians and afflicts approximately 37 million Americans annually. The symptoms of acute sinusitis in adults usually follow a cold that does not improve, or one that gets worse after 5 - 7 days of symptoms. Symptoms include:
Bad breath or loss of smell
Cough, often worse at night
Fatigue and generally not feeling well
Headache -- pressure-like pain, pain behind the eyes, toothache, or tenderness of the face
Nasal stuffiness and discharge
Sore throat and postnasal drip
Symptoms of chronic sinusitis are the same as those of acute sinusitis, but tend to be milder and last longer than 12 weeks.
When repeated medical management is not effective, ENT specialists are called in. Now, instead of undergoing the conventional operation to open blocked sinus passageways, patients can opt for Balloon Sinuplasty, offered by Dr. Kevin Lollar, ENT specialist with Hannibal Regional Medical Group.
Unlike traditional sinus surgery, Balloon Sinuplasty requires no cutting and no removal of bone and tissue. Balloon Sinuplasty is a minimally invasive procedure that is catheter based. The devices are FDA-cleared and provide an alternative to traditional sinus surgery instrumentation. The use of sinus balloon catheters to open the ostia has been proven to be less invasive for the patient and safe and effective.
Balloon Sinuplasty is done in four steps. First, the sinus guide catheter is introduced into the nasal cavity. Then, the balloon is gradually inflated to open and remodel the narrowed or blocked cavity. Next, the balloon is removed and the sinus is irrigated. Finally, the irrigation catheter is removed, leaving the sinus cleared of mucus and allowing the return of sinus drainage.