Many individuals experience seasonal allergies, but chronic sinus issues and sinusitis currently affect over a million people. Sinusitis may occur due to inflammation of the sinuses and result in a blockage that can cause an infection.
Various side effects or symptoms can result from chronic sinus problems, such as frequent headaches, migraines, congestion, eye pain, and sore throats. Sadly, over-the-counter treatments do not provide adequate relief for some, and these issues may ultimately require outpatient surgery.
Patients can choose between two common surgical options: endoscopic sinus surgery and balloon sinuplasty. Keep reading to discover their differences and which option may be best for you and your sinus conditions.
Endoscopic Sinus Surgery
Endoscopic sinus surgery involves the use of an endoscope—a long and thin rod with a light at the end to help your doctor locate and magnify the sinus tissue. Your ENT surgeon will remove a thin bone and mucous membranes with specialized instruments, clearing blockages from the drainage pathways. Once the blockages are removed, the patient should experience improved airflow, sense of smell, and few sinus complications.
This procedure is performed under anesthesia and the recovery process is quick, with about two hours of rest after surgery. There may be bleeding for the first day or two and slight fatigue for the remainder of the week.
Balloon Sinuplasty Surgery
Balloon sinuplasty surgery is a simple procedure that does not take long and doesn’t require the removal of any bone or tissue. This surgery involves the insertion of a tiny balloon into the sinuses, which is then slowly inflated to help open the sinuses. When the sinuses are dilated, a saline spray is used to drain the built-up fluids or mucus. After the sinus is cleared of blockages, the balloon is deflated and removed. Balloon sinuplasty recovery is easy, but it does require an ample amount of rest.
Balloon sinuplasty is a safe and effective way to relieve sinus congestion and pain. However, if a patient suffers from chronic sinus pain, nasal congestion, and migraines and does not respond well to medication, this method may not be the best for them.
Which Procedure Is Best?
Both procedures are safe and effective in the treatment of sinusitis. Patients experiencing acute sinusitis or frequent pressure headaches may have narrow sinus openings, and balloon sinuplasty is the ideal option. Patients with mild chronic sinusitis may also see satisfactory results with balloon sinuplasty.
On the other hand, patients with chronic sinus inflammatory issues that cannot be consistently controlled with over-the-counter medications will benefit from endoscopic sinus surgery. This procedure aims to improve symptoms while helping reduce inflammation.
Endoscopic sinus surgery and balloon sinuplasty both work exceptionally well, but the right procedure for you depends on your needs and condition.
If you or someone you know in Houston suffers from sinusitis or other sinus-related symptoms that impact their quality of life, contact us today at (713) 597-4426 to schedule an appointment.