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Dr. Kevin Smith joins with Great Day Houston to talk about a more permanent solution to sinus problems.
Speaker 1: Welcome back to Great Day Medical Monday. Okay, so one medication dries you out too much, the other addresses the sneezing, but does nothing for the watery eyes, and the stuff that helps you to breathe through your nose, it says you should only use it for a few days at a time. If you're tired of trying to medicate away your sinus problems, why not just fix it and forget about it? You'll be in and out and breathing through that snout in no time. How about that?Okay, joining us with a more permanent solution to sinus problems, welcome Dr. Kevin Smith with American Sinus Institute. Good morning.
Dr. Kevin Smith: Good morning.
Speaker 1: All right. That is what we do. We touched on that in the earlier segments, that we have a symptom, we want the symptom to go away, we don't really look at what's causing it. Temporary relief of over the counter medications, obviously fine?
Dr. Kevin Smith: That's fine, but you want to get to the root cause of why you're having all these symptoms. People in Houston suffer every day from sinus, allergies, stuffiness, inability to sleep, and so you need to find out what is the root cause of that and address it and move on with life.
Speaker 1: Yeah, okay. So I usually get hit one time a year with ragweed and that's it. So over the counter medications in that case ...
Dr. Kevin Smith: That's fine, but we're talking about the chronic problems where you're chronically sniffing and snorting, coughing at work, you know, what have you, you're not sleeping at night.
Speaker 1: You're miserable.
Dr. Kevin Smith: Yeah, you're just miserable.
Speaker 1: Okay. So that facial pressure, the headaches, the runny nose. How often would you say, if somebody's dealing with all these symptoms that we see up there, what person should come in and say, "Okay, we need to look at another procedure?"
Dr. Kevin Smith: If you're having sinus infections more than three times a year, you're congested or can't breathe more than 50% of the time, every morning, every night you're congested, you have headaches that are chronic. It's not normal to have a headache, first of all. So any headaches that are once a week, once a month even, that's too many.
Speaker 1: Yeah. Now here's the problem. A lot of times people will go to a doctor and list maybe some of their symptoms, and they'll treat for the migraines, they'll treat for the sleep apnea, they'll treat for the gastric reflux, all these things, not realizing that it all kind of centers right here. And then, of course, there's allergies and sinus issues, sometimes you get one or the other, or both [00:02:00] together.
Dr. Kevin Smith: That's right. They can be a combination of both together, which is really horrible. You have the allergies, which cause the swelling in the nose, you can't breathe, it blocks the sinus passages. The passages then get infected, then you have to get the antibiotic to get it treated. It's just a vicious cycle that you're going through.
Speaker 1: Yeah. Okay. So, we can take care of this once and for all in many cases.
Dr. Kevin Smith: We really can. The American Sinus Institute, what we do is we use the balloon sinuplasty, which is a very easy technique that we use to open up the sinuses naturally. We don't take [00:02:30] out or remove any tissue, and we help you breathe better, feel better, gives you much more energy, and you're back at work or back at school the next day after the procedure.
Speaker 1: So it literally, what just goes in there like a Roto-Rooter? What does it do?
Dr. Kevin Smith: Well, it's like a little balloon. It's a six by 16 millimeter balloon. The wire helps find the track, the balloon then slides over the wire, we blow it up then we take it out and move to the other side and do the other sinuses. It takes literally ... I've done this, shortest 13 minutes ...
Speaker 1: Wow.
Dr. Kevin Smith: ... to get everything done and have you feeling better.
Speaker 1: Yeah, yeah. All right. So once that's done, is it done for good or is it something you keep under maintenance?
Dr. Kevin Smith: Well about 90 ... More than 90% of the balloon sinuplastys we do are permanent. There are occasions where you might get a little scar tissue, you may have to redo it, but it's nothing really major. You come in, you get it done and you're out.
Speaker 1: Yeah. Now what were people doing before? 'Cause I know, I've had other friends who've dealt with this. I've said, "Just go get taken care of, there's this procedure." They're like, "No, my mother had that years ago. I hated it, she hated it." But it's not the same thing.
Dr. Kevin Smith: It's nothing like that. If you go on YouTube and look at sinus surgery, you're gonna see all these horrific stories about using packing, taking out tissues, post-operative bleeding, those types of things. Well, with the balloon sinuplasty, we're not removing any tissue. What we're doing is just dilating up the normal passageways and allowing it to do what it's supposed to do, drain the sinuses and help aerate the sinuses.
Speaker 1: Yeah. Now one reason why people may put something like this off is cost, but if you look at if you're constantly using the decongestants, the anti-histamines, the nasal sprays, you're spending hundreds, if not thousands of dollars on this.
Dr. Kevin Smith: You really are, and when you're looking at people who are suffering on a yearly basis. I mean, you're looking at nose sprays. Sometimes I even hate to tell people to take nose sprays, even if it's temporary, they cost so much. So with the nose sprays, the decongestants, all those things, if you look at that annual expense, you could take that, pay us the co-pay, which is usually 25, 30 dollars, and maybe your out of pocket might be $1500 or so. And you get the balloon sinuplasty done and you're on with life.
Speaker 1: And when you feel better, that's priceless.
Dr. Kevin Smith: Oh, it is.
Speaker 1: All right. Dr. Smith, thank you very much. To schedule an appointment with American Sinus Institute, you can call 713 BALLOON. 713 BALLOON. That's 713-225-5666. 713-225-5666. Or visit them online at AmericanSinus.com. You also deal with allergy issues and the whole bit, but the bottom line is if you keep suffering with this, go in, at least know where you stand and if this will work for you.
Dr. Kevin Smith: Exactly.
Speaker 1: All right. Thank you very much.
Dr. Kevin Smith: Thank you.