Most people likely only give their sinuses thought when they’re congested, typically during a respiratory infection or when allergy season arrives. Headaches, runny nose, and breathing problems take hold for a few weeks, then life returns to normal. For an unlucky few, though, chronic sinus issues last for months. Congestion causes conditions that sustain infections, and the suffering continues.
When you visit Sheridan Ear, Nose & Throat in Sheridan, Wyoming, you’re meeting with the doctor who first brought balloon sinus dilation therapy to Wyoming and Montana. Dr. Scott Bateman co-founded the practice the same year balloon sinus dilation received approval by the United States Food and Drug Administration, revolutionizing the treatment of chronic sinus conditions.
Long-term sinus issues
Chronic sinusitis affects almost 30 million Americans. A sinus problem reaches the chronic stage when you’ve had symptoms for three months or longer and conservative treatment options fail. Sinusitis results from physical problems including the growth of nasal polyps or a deviated septum, infections or inflammations that block drainage, or other conditions such as cystic fibrosis or HIV.
When effective drainage stops, chronic issues begin since your sinuses now create an ideal home for viral, bacterial, or fungal infections. No matter what the original cause of your sinusitis, other conditions can form and sustain the breathing and drainage problems.
Balloon sinus dilation to the rescue
A key advantage of balloon sinus dilation, also called balloon sinuplasty, is its endoscopic approach and lack of incisions or tissue removal. Without the need for surgical access, your recovery is fast and comes with minimal side effects from the treatment.
Accessing the affected sinus cavities through the nose, a catheter introduces a small balloon into the sinus cavity. As the balloon inflates, it pushes back the sinus walls, and they remain open long enough for normal sinus drainage to resume.
Advantages of balloon sinuplasty
Not only is balloon sinus dilation safe, but it’s also quickly becoming the standard of care for treatment of sinusitis. Patient satisfaction with the procedure shows positive results in several studies over the last seven years.
As well as happy patients, there’s plenty to like about the balloon dilation concept. Traditional endoscopic sinus procedures surgically remove tissue, requiring longer recovery times and post-surgical follow-up. Balloon sinuplasty offers advantages such as:
- Reduced risk of bleeding
- No need to remove bone, cartilage, or other tissue
- Less risk of post-procedure infection
- Frequently performed as an outpatient procedure
- Reduced risk of unexpected tissue damage
- Minimal procedural and post-procedure pain
The long-term reach of your balloon sinus dilation procedure depends on the cause of your sinusitis problem. Some conditions may reoccur regardless of the treatment method. In other cases, you can expect long-lasting results.
To learn more about balloon sinus dilation and how it may help you breathe easier, call Sheridan Ear, Nose & Throat at 307-672-0290 or make an appointment using the online tool at the top of this page. Dr. Bateman and his team are sinus care experts, so you’re assured the finest and most appropriate treatment for your condition.