Nearly 30 million Americans are diagnosed with inflamed nasal passages and sinuses, AKA sinusitis, every year, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). That’s one out of seven adults! Sinus infection symptoms are uncomfortable, painful and debilitating. They include sinus pressure behind the eyes and cheeks; a runny, stuffy nose; headache; fever; cough; bad breath; thick yellow or green mucus; fatigue; and decreased sense of smell.
And while antibiotics are a common course of treatment, a growing body of evidence suggests that they do no more good than a placebo in terms of improving sinusitis. Not only that, but adverse events related to antibiotic use and escalating rates of drug resistance are also on the list of reasons to avoid antibiotics.
Instead, doctors recommend using a number of methods to accelerate the sinusitis recovery process, including drinking plenty of water; eating healthy, immune-boosting foods; keeping sinuses hydrated with tools like humidifiers, saline nasal sprays, and steam treatments; using warm compresses around the nose, cheeks, and eyes; and taking over-the-counter medications like aspirin and antihistamines.
THE BALLOON SINUPLASTY SOLUTION
While sinus problems will sometimes resolve on their own or with help from the treatment methods above, chronic sinusitis can last for months. If your symptoms last for more than 10 days or if they recur several times, you’re not without hope, however. Scheduling a consultation with an ear, nose and throat (ENT) specialist can help you understand your options.
One especially promising sinusitis treatment that has revolutionized sinus care? The Honrubia Technique for Balloon Sinuplasty. This minimally invasive technique involves minimal tissue removal with minimal pain thanks to the use of intravenous anesthesia for the patient’s comfort and safety. Not only does this in-office procedure take an average of just 20 minutes, but it also boasts quicker recovery times than conventional sinus surgery. In fact, most patients return to their normal activities within two days.
Since balloon sinuplasty surgery emerged as a sinus treatment, hundreds of thousands of patients have undergone the procedure with a staggering 95 percent of them reporting that it gave them the relief they needed and they’d choose it again in the future.
Balloon sinuplasty (BSP) has been heralded as a “breakthrough in endoscopic sinus surgery.” This safe and effective procedure offers relief to people suffering from sinusitis and sinus pain symptoms caused by everything from allergies to infection. Wondering what makes BSP different from traditional sinus surgery? While both share the same goal of reducing inflammation, keeping nasal passages draining, and correcting the underlying issue, they do differ in several key ways.
Here’s a closer look at the differences between traditional sinus surgery and balloon sinuplasty, along with why the latter offers new hope for a better quality of life for people living with chronic sinusitis.
Level of Invasiveness
One of the primary differences between traditional sinus surgery and BSP is level of invasiveness. While traditional sinus surgery requires the removal of bone or tissue from the nose, BSP involves less trauma to the surrounding tissue thanks to the development of less invasive technology which allows ear, nose and throat doctors (ENTs) to open inflamed sinuses via the same method heart surgeons use during balloon angioplasty to open up blocked arteries. During BSP, doctors insert a small, flexible balloon catheter into the affected area, which gently expands the tissue.
Because of its minimal level of invasiveness, BSP can be performed as an in-office procedure and takes an average of just 20 minutes, compared to traditional sinus surgery in a hospital or surgical center.
Furthermore, cutting-edge BSP also has a reduced risk complications, as well as a lower likelihood of scarring and the need for follow-up surgery to correct it.
Lastly, while traditional sinus surgery usually involves packing of the nose following the procedure, BSP’s less invasive nature eliminates the need for this uncomfortable step.
Not only is BSP is less invasive than conventional sinus surgery, it also involves less pain and a faster recovery time. One study of in-office balloon dilation reveals that not only is the procedure “tolerable or highly tolerable” to more than 82 percent of patients, but most patients return to normal activity within 48 hours. No further care is required following BSP, and the results are long-lasting. Meanwhile, recovery from traditional sinus surgery can take anywhere from a few days to multiple weeks.
If you’re living with the pressure, pain, congestion, coughing, and fatigue of chronic sinusitis in the San Antonio, Texas area, there’s no need to continue to suffer. Nor is there a need for painful, invasive surgery with the potential for a prolonged recovery time and complications. Instead, consider balloon sinuplasty. To learn more about BSP and whether you’re a candidate for this life-changing treatment, book an appointment with the American Sinus Institute today.
Balloon sinuplasty has been heralded for revolutionizing sinus surgery since it was introduced more than a decade ago. Wondering what’s involved with balloon sinuplasty surgery and — perhaps more importantly — whether you can afford it? Here’s a closer look at this cutting edge procedure and what you can expect to pay for it.
About Balloon Sinuplasty
While acute sinusitis can usually be treated by primary care physicians, people with chronic sinusitis are often referred to otolaryngologists, AKA an ear, nose and throat (ENT) doctors. These specialists conduct more thorough exams aimed at determining how best to reduce the inflammation, drain the nasal passages, and identify and correct the underlying cause of the problem, such as allergies. When more conservative treatments don’t work, sinus surgery is often recommended.
The good news? While conventional sinus surgery uses an external incision that may lead to scarring, minimally-invasive balloon sinuplasty involves no removal of bones or tissue but is equally effective. In fact, according to a long-term analysis of balloon sinuplasty published in the academic journal, Otolaryngology — Head and Neck Surgery, patients show “significant improvements” years after undergoing the procedure. Balloon sinuplasty surgery also boasts faster recovery times and without the complications associated with traditional surgery. (There’s a reason why its nickname is the “smart sinus” procedure.)
Wondering whether you’re a candidate for balloon sinuplasty? The American Sinus Institute’s Sinus Symptom Checker can help you make sense of your symptoms.
Balloon Sinuplasty Cost
Since it was cleared by the FDA in 2005, balloon sinuplasty has been performed on more than 150,000 patients — a number that’s growing by the day. Given its proven efficacy and positive outcomes, it’s hardly a surprise that so many people in the San Antonio, Texas region and all over the world are turning to this breakthrough procedure for relief from chronic sinusitis and its symptoms.
Balloon sinuplasty is not just preferable to traditional sinus surgery because it’s both safe and effective, it can also be more affordable. As an outpatient procedure, when balloon sinuplasty is performed in the doctor’s office under local or general anesthesia, you can expect to pay less than you would for sinus surgery performed in an operating room. You’ll also have less downtime following the surgery so you can return more quickly to your everyday life.
One last thing to keep in mind if you’re considering balloon sinuplasty surgery? In addition to being an investment in your sinus health, it’s also an investment in your overall wellness and quality of life. If you live in the San Antonio, Texas area and you’re ready to stop living with sinus pain and to start breathing freer, book an appointment today with the American Sinus Institute.
Thousands of people in the San Antonio area suffer from sinus problems. These can take a huge toll — especially without prompt and proper treatment. If you have trouble breathing through your nose and think it’s something you just have to live with, think again. Understanding these five common misconceptions about sinuses can help you seek the treatment you need to breathe easier and feel better.
1. A runny nose is the primary symptom of sinus problems.
While a runny nose” is one of the most well-known symptoms of sinus problems, it’s far from alone. Other main signs of sinusitis include facial pain or pressure, loss of smell, and cough or congestion. Fever, bad breath, fatigue, and dental pain are less common symptoms of sinus problems.
Because many health issues can cause these symptoms, it’s important to see a doctor to determine if sinusitis or another issue is to blame.
2. All sinus symptoms indicate sinus infections.
Many sinus symptoms indicate sinus infections, AKA acute sinusitis. This inflammation of the cavities around your sinuses can be caused by several types of infections, including upper respiratory infections, bacteria, and even the common cold.
However, when this inflammation lasts for longer than three months, lingering sinus symptoms — or symptoms which recur multiple times throughout the year — may indicate chronic sinusitis. This is usually caused by another culprit, such as asthma, allergies or nasal polyps, and mandates a visit with an otolaryngologist (ear, nose, and throat doctor). Approximately 12.5 percent of the US population has been diagnosed with sinusitis, according to the CDC.
3. Surgery is the sole treatment for sinus problems.
There are many different treatments for sinus problems. In some cases, rest, hydration, decongestants, OTC pain medication, nasal sprays, and antibiotics are effective treatments for acute sinusitis. In other cases, allergy treatments, steroids, and alternative therapies can offer relief.
The type of treatment depends on the symptoms and their degree of severity. Your doctor will recommend the best treatment for your particular situation.
4. Chronic sinusitis surgery is invasive and requires extensive healing time.
Approximately 500,000 chronic sinusitis surgeries are performed in the United States every year, according to Knowable Magazine. And while patients seeking lasting relief from painful sinusitis had only one surgical option in the past, today’s patients have more choices, including innovative balloon sinuplasty. (On that note, sinuplasty and rhinoplasty, AKA a “nose job,” are not the same thing.)
One particularly revolutionary type of balloon sinuplasty? The Honrubia Technique, created by Dr. Vincent F. Honrubia of San Antonio’s American Sinus Institute. Involving less pain and minimal tissue removal, this procedure is more comfortable because it’s performed under anesthesia. The Honrubia Technique also supports a quicker recovery than traditional sinus surgery, and patients are spared unpleasant surgical side effects, such as swelling, black eyes, facial bruising, and a gauze-packed nose.
5. Sinus symptoms will eventually go away on their own.
While some sinus symptoms will resolve on their own, this means living with unnecessary pain and discomfort until they do. In rare cases, dangerous complications can result from untreated sinusitis, such as meningitis, bone infections, and brain abscesses. As such, seeing a doctor for sinusitis symptoms is imperative.
One last thing to keep in mind about sinus surgery? While it doesn’t mean you’ll never get sick again, it does mean your sinuses will drain more easily if you do. The result? Fewer, less severe symptoms in a shorter duration.
The key to optimizing your sinus health — and overall quality of life — ultimately relies on understanding your symptoms and the available treatment options. Book an appointment with the American Sinus Institute today to take a big step toward breathing easier.
Dr. Vincent Honrubia: People often ask, “Why would I go to ASI [American Sinus Institute] to get my balloon sinuplasty versus another doctor’s office?” The answer to that is that the ASI office, yes an ENT office, but an ENT office that only does balloon sinuplasty. We have office space and offices dedicated to only doing that one procedure. When you go to an ASI facility, you’re getting surgeons that just do balloon sinuplasty. We believe we get better, more predictable outcomes, more predictable results, and provide the best patient care possible for people seeking treatment of chronic sinusitis that need balloon sinuplasty.
Jennifer Broome from Houston Life interviews Dr. Robert Palmer from American Sinus Institute to learn how patients can find relief to symptoms of sinusitis.
Eric: This winter has just been a really, really long one.
Speaker 2: Yeah, it really has. Thanks, Eric.
Eric: You bet.
Speaker 2: You know when the seasons change, sneezing and sleepless nights can follow. But how do you know when these are symptoms of more than just allergies? We have Dr. Robert Palmer from American Sinus Institute here to explain.
And Dr. Palmer, you know, a lot of folks this time of year are having the sniffling, the sneezing, the stuffy head from allergies. But how do you know you’re going from allergies to sinusitis?
Dr. Palmer: It’s difficult to tell, but usually you’ll have a discolored discharge that will tell you that you have an infection rather than just having symptoms of allergies. But essentially, the symptoms are exactly the same. People who suffer from allergies end up with the headaches, the sneezing. They can’t breathe, and they have pressure and pain. And they benefit from surgery as well as people that have recurring sinusitis, which is actually an infection. We treat both of those.
Speaker 2: Okay. Okay, so when you continually have issues with allergies, maybe they need to come in and say, “Hey, Dr. Palmer, what’s going on up in here?”
Dr. Palmer: Exactly. In fact, these people are the ones that need to see us. I’d rather see them before they’re infected, you know? There’s a subtle difference between it, but people who have allergies are usually hit four or five times a year, and when they have it they’re miserable. They have headaches, they have a runny nose, they can’t breathe, they have pressure pain. And it’s all because they don’t ventilate their sinuses. And once we ventilate those sinuses, they feel 100% better.
Speaker 2: Well, in sinus surgery now, what you guys do is so different than it was, say, 10, even 15-20 years ago.
Dr. Palmer: Less is better. Less is better.
Speaker 2: That’s a good thing.
Dr. Palmer: I did a lot of sinus surgery. I probably did 2000 cases endoscopically. This operation is so much better. There’s less trauma, and we get a better result.
Speaker 2: Okay, so we want to see what it’s like when a patient comes through your office, so we’re going to take everybody through a little walk-through when they go to American Sinus Institute.
Jason: Hi. I’m Jason.
Speaker 2: Hi Jason. How are you?
Jason: It’s good to see you. Thanks for coming.
Speaker 2: So, Jason, if I was a regular patient coming in, what would be the first thing that would happen now that I’m in the room?
Jason: One of the nurses would come in and do a very through intake. They’d ask you about your history, all the kind of medicines that you’ve taken.
Speaker 2: Like, do you snore? Do you … All those kind of questions. Can you sleep at night? Do you have ear pressure?
Jason: Headaches, sinus pressure, drainage. These are typical for our patients. Once that’s done, we take you over and get a CAT scan here, in the other room, and it takes about five minutes to have that come up. And then I will come in and do an exam, and go over the CAT scan with you.
Speaker 2: So, at this point you’re just kind of figuring out what’s going on up in here, right?
Jason: Yeah. We want to see, what does it look like? What’s the structure? And how can we address the structure so that the sinuses function ideally. Let me peek at you.
Speaker 2: Oh, no.
Jason: Yeah. So, I’ve got a scope.
Speaker 2: But you’ve actually done this surgery?
Jason: I have done the surgery, and the surgery helped me quite a bit. It relieved my headaches. So, turn your head this way.
Speaker 2: Is everybody else a big, wide-eyed when this comes towards their face?
Jason: All right. Be very still.
Speaker 2: So, this visit and the CAT scan is kind of where you make that decision of, “No, you’re just having allergy issues.” Or, “Yeah, you’re having major sinus issues.”
Erin: The scan only takes about 20 seconds, so it’s really quick.
Speaker 2: Oh, this has now turned into a rocket ship.
Erin: Yeah, it’s really quick and your only job is just to hold really still.
Speaker 2: I can do that.
Erin: Okay, so I’m just going to shine that little laser light here on you.
Speaker 2: And Erin, this is exactly what your patients would go through?
Erin: Yes, this is exactly what they would go through. I’m going to-
Speaker 2: What are those?
Erin: These are just little wedge sponges that are just going to hold your head in position. And the next part is just the scan, which takes about 20 seconds.
Speaker 2: And this would be what you would do with a regular patient after they’ve had the CAT scan, like I just went and did. We were using your CAT scan, since you’ve had this surgery. So, kind of walk me through what we’re seeing. I can pick out where the eyes are. How many sinuses do we have?
Jason: Eight. There’s two in the cheeks, two between the eyes, and then two in the forehead-
Speaker 2: Oh, so that would be like that sinus headache that people get?
Speaker 2: That’s where those are, okay.
Jason: That’s where they’re feeling it.
Speaker 2: So, how do you know in this, how do you know that it’s inflamed?
Jason: This gray is what we’re looking for in these patients. And so if they have this kind of gray, that can be washed out and cleaned. Some folks this … all of the black is completely filled in with gray, so they’re not able to drain at all and they’re miserable.
Speaker 2: So how quickly after you had it done, how quickly did you notice the difference of, “Wow. This is what it’s supposed to feel like breathing.”
Jason: For me it was instant.
Speaker 2: But it’s like a super quick … I mean, you’re not put under for very long, right?
Jason: It’s a 30-minute surgery, 30-minute prep time. 30-minute procedure and you’re here about an hour hanging around afterwards.
Speaker 2: Just to make sure.
Jason: Mm-hmm (affirmative).
Speaker 2: Okay, so Dr. Palmer, I’m going to be that typical patient go, “Do you leave that balloon up in there?”
Dr. Palmer: We do not leave that balloon in here. Let me show you something here. This is the little catheter that has the balloon on it, and you can see how small it is.
Speaker 2: Well, that’s smaller than the thing that Jason stuck up my nose.
Dr. Palmer: Well, that was the scope. That was the scope. This is just the balloon, and that goes into the sinus. See that, from here to here, that will go into the sinus. And then we take a syringe and we blow it up. It goes up to about six millimeters.
Speaker 2: Which is small.
Dr. Palmer: Which is small. The sinuses are only about one to two millimeters. And we dilate it for 10 seconds and then we take it out.
Speaker 2: So of course, Dr. Palmer, you know I had to be that one to ask, “Are you going to leave that balloon up in the nose?” But I was so surprised with Jason. He said he instantly, right after the surgery, could breathe.
Dr. Palmer: Exactly.
Speaker 2: He could feel the nose breathe, not the mouth breathing he’d done for years.
Dr. Palmer: Exactly. Yes, the balloon is taken out. It’s not left in your nose.
Speaker 2: You’ve got to ask.
Dr. Palmer: And the beauty about what we do, every time we operate on somebody for the sinuses, we shrink the mucosa of the nose. Because if you can’t breathe, those sinuses can get blocked and then you breathe through your mouth. You get a dry mouth and you snore. So, when we … the Honrubia technique, every time we address the turbinates and shrink them with coblation. It’s a radio frequency device, and it shrinks it so now you can breathe and your sinuses will stay open.
Speaker 2: And the surgery itself is very, very short. And recovery time seems really short.
Dr. Palmer: Yes, 15 minutes is the shortest. Sometimes it takes me 30 minutes. A tough case would take 45. And the beauty is we don’t pack the nose so when you leave, your nose is open. You can breathe. And within three or four days, you’re feeling 100% better.
Speaker 2: Dr. Palmer, you are changing lives every day with folks, making them be able to breathe. Now for more information, to schedule your appointment with American Sinus Institute, you can call 713 BALLOON. That works out to be 713-225-5666. Or visit americansinus.com. Thank you again, Dr. Palmer, for coming in.
PA Katrina Zedan joins client Roland Navaira and his wife Alice on SA Live to talk about how resolving Roland’s sinus problems has changed his life.
Fiona: Welcome back to SA Live. Well, the cold front has moved in and brought those dreaded sinus diseases along with it. Joining me today is Katrina Ze- Zedan with the American Sinus Institute. Thank you so much for being here. What are some of the signs and symptoms of having sinus problems?
Katrina Zedan: Sinus pain, sinus pressure, frequent sinus infections. When medications fail to work …
Katrina Zedan: … patients end up in our office.
Fiona: (laughs) Because sometimes they don’t always work. You’re like …
Katrina Zedan: That’s right.
Fiona: “Oh, my goodness. I can’t take it anymore.” How is American Sinus helping those sinus problems to the curb?
Katrina Zedan: We do an evaluation on the patient. We do a CT scan, we fully examine them, and we look at to see if balloon sinuplasty would be the, the, the way to go.
Fiona: So what kind of results are people going to see after this procedure.
Katrina Zedan: Well, it’s great because we have patients here to tell us exactly how they feel. The great thing is is there are symptoms that people don’t associate with sinuses, like the trouble sleeping, the snoring that people get, or the headaches. People think it’s migraines, and they end up being sinus headaches, so we’re going to see wha-
Fiona: Yeah, you mentioned we have patients here today.
Katrina Zedan: Yes, exactly.
Fiona: And Mike is standing by with both of them.
Mike: Roland and Alice Navaira. By the way, married 52 years.
Mike: That is absolutely wonderful. You were just a child, weren’t you? So, anyway, back to the topic at hand, you had the, the operation, the surgery, Roland, right?
Roland: I, I did.
Mike: What was it like before you had it?
Roland: Well, before I had a lot of congestion.
Mike: Mm-hmm (affirmative).
Roland: Uh, a lot of sinus headaches, pressure …
Roland: I snore like a bear at night.
Alice: That he did.
Mike: That he- Okay. No getting away from that one, is he? So …
Roland: No, I didn’t.
Mike: Okay, so …
Roland: And I probably won’t.
Mike: Now, after you had it and they took out all the packing and everything like that, did- was it an immediate just …
Roland: Oh, I could feel the difference immediately.
Roland: I mean, um, I was breathing a lot easier, I no longer had the sinus pressure, I no longer had the headaches, or I- nil- I- I’m not- um, any longer had to get up in the morning and rush to the bedroom to blow my nose. That was …
Roland: That was-
Mike: How did it change your life?
Alice: I could sleep better because I didn’t have to nudge him all night long because he was snoring. And I noticed that instantly. You know, I said, you know, a day later, I said, “You know what? I didn’t hear you snore today.”
Mike: And so, one of the other benefits, I would assume, because you slept better, you’re more rested and you said he- in a better mood basically, so …
Roland: Oh yeah.
Alice: Exactly, exactly.
Alice: I could tell. In the morning the first thing he would do, run to the bathroom, blow his nose …
Mike: Mm-hmm (affirmative).
Alice: And then, all day long, you know, I could tell in his facial expressions that he just wasn’t feeling good. You know?
Roland: It’s funny. I’m laughing because of the fact that she used to tell me in the morning when I wa- she heard me blow my nose, she says, “You’re going to blow your brains out.” (laughter)
Alice: Yes. He would. He doesn’t do that.
Roland: I feel something stuck in there, you know, so I got to get it out.
Mike: How- How did you- How long ago did you have the procedure?
Roland: I had mine back in January, I believe.
Mike: Okay. And then ever since then, it’s just been fantastic, right?
Roland: Oh. No more headaches.
Mike: And about how long was the recovery period?
Roland: For me was like about two or three weeks.
Roland: But it was- I’m pretty good at [crosstalk 03:04].
Mike: And you’re, you’re a new person, basically, right?
Roland: Oh, yeah.
Mike: Okay. Are those results typical, Doctor?
Katrina Zedan: They are typical. Uh, we have many patients that think, like I said, they have migraines and they end up being sinus headaches. We have patients that are breathing better now.
Roland: Oh yeah.
Katrina Zedan: And like you said, when they’re sleeping better, you know, they wake up with more energy and they’re not so irritated or fatigued right, throughout the day.
Katrina Zedan: So it makes a big difference. But the big thing is the sinus pain, the pressure, and the infections that patients get, they no longer get. So again, when medicine fails to work, come see us. We’d be happy to, to help you live a lot better …
Roland: Oh, yeah.
Katrina Zedan: … than you are now. (chuckles)
Fiona: Roland, what would you tell to viewers who might be unsure or scared to make that appointment?
Roland: There’s nothing to be scared of. I mean, you know, just, if you’re having sinus problems, make the call. I did. I mean, and I’m glad I did, because, uh, I’ve- I’ve- I breath a lot easier now.
Fiona: And she’s so happy. (laughter)
Mike: And you’re …
Roland: Oh yeah. And a happy wife is a happy life. You know, like just what they say, so … (laughter)
Mike: Another 52 years, so it’s worth it. So …
Roland: Yeah. All set for ten more.
Mike: Thank you both for being here.
Fiona: All right, Roland, thank you so much for telling your story. You too, thank you. For more information you can call 225-5666, that’s 225-5666. Or head to americansinus.com. All right, coming up-
Dr. Vincent Honrubia talks to Houston Life about how a storm stir up your sinus symptoms and the nonevasive procedure he recommends to fix them.
Derrick Shore – Here’s a live look outside from our Avenida-Houston cam; looking over Discovery Green folks. Welcome back to Houston Life. So, chronic sinus symptoms like headaches, facial pain and breathing problems can all affect your quality of life and unfortunately, the recent weather we’ve been having, maybe a hurricane or two could make those existing issues even worse.
Jennifer Broome – But there’s good news. There is a minimally invasive technology that could help put an end to your sinus pain. Dr. Vincent Honrubia with the American Sinus Institute is here with the details. Hi, Dr. Honrubia.
Dr. Vincent Honrubia – Hi! Thank you for having me.
Jennifer Broome – Okay let’s talk about this. Have you been noticing kind of an uptick in folks coming to see you since the storm and since our air quality has gotten so bad?
Dr. Vincent Honrubia – Yes, we have noticed that and also that this recent exposure to all this dirty water, people swimming out of restaurants, people moving around in the water. Put off their head under this water that has a lot of bacteria causing, lots of problems and a lot more complicated infections that people ordinarily wouldn’t be exposed to.
Derrick Shore – And in the beginning, I mean a lot of people didn’t really have a choice but to go through the water, I mean a lot of people were sort of recreating in the water. I don’t know if you saw those videos on YouTube of people like jumping in, waterskiing in it. But, some of those people may have residual issues as a result.
Dr. Vincent Honrubia – That’s correct. You know just like people are getting these chronic skin infections and things like that, the sinuses are open cavities that aren’t supposed to be exposed to this type of bacteria. And one of the things we do with this procedures not only we open and clean the sinuses, but we also rinse the sinuses out.
Jennifer Broome – So talk a little bit about the procedure because this is designed to be minimally invasive, this isn’t to give you a bunch of downtime, later.
Dr. Vincent Honrubia – Correct. This is a procedure done in the office that takes about 20 to 25 minutes. It’s done with anesthesia, with an anesthesia provider there, using small balloon catheters to go into the sinuses open the sinuses through their natural opening, and at the same time rinse out the chronic infection that sits in the sinus.
Derrick Shore – So, when you say anesthesia, you’re not like totally out right? It’s not general anesthesia?
Dr. Vincent Honrubia – It’s not general anesthesia. It’s IV sedation.
Derrick Shore – So you are awake during the process. We’re seeing some video actually behind you. So, as you mentioned that tiny little balloon flips up there.
Dr. Vincent Honrubia – Right, the tiny little balloon goes in. It then it opens the sinus by pushing away and creating space by compressing tissue in certain positions. And then after that’s done, we rinse it, clean the sinus out. So when you do have the procedure, this procedure in our office with the Honrubia technique, you are not conscious that you’re having the procedure so there’s no pain, no discomfort but people can return to work the next day. There’s no bleeding, there’s no bruising, there’s no indication you had a procedure done.
Jennifer Broome – How does somebody know, if what they’re going through it’s just kind of seasonal stuff, seasonal allergies or if they really do maybe need something like this?
Dr. Vincent Honrubia – Well, I think in the past before this incident, it was easy to tell because you’d be in a long-term situation where you’re chronically taking medications over and over. Now it’s gonna be very hard to tell especially if you didn’t have any sinus problems before and now you’re having a problem it’s gonna be hard to tell without having someone examine you, do a cat scan, study what’s going on if you really have some acute unusual bacteria, bacteria in your sinuses it’s hard to figure that out without professional advice.
Derrick Shore – And Dr. Honorubia, we’ve spoken you’ve been on the show before, but it’s interesting I’ve heard from your clients say I can’t believe I waited so long to do something like this, it made such a difference and I think many of us who maybe are a little adverse or averse rather, to having any sort of surgery done. This is an outpatient procedure, there’s no pain, you’ve done more than 3000 of these surgeries, so there’s really not a lot to worry about.
Dr. Vincent Honrubia – Right, not a lot to worry about. Covered by your insurance; not a lot to worry about. People turn to work very very soon after the procedure and we have a long track record of working well with the patients, getting good results, publishing our data. We’re very open about what we’re doing.
Derrick Shore – So instead of just continuing to live with the symptoms, people can go in, and actually we’re seeing some video right now of the office. I mean how much time would someone expect to pass until they’re breathing normally again?
Dr. Vincent Honrubia – People come in with this procedure, you see them they’re getting the cat scan on the TV, but what they do is they come in, they get scanned they get examined, the procedure like I said it happens in the mornings, often patients go to work the following day, some patients have gone to work the same day. That’s depending on how bad they want to go to work, but like I said, it’s a minimally invasive, effective way of treating your sinusitis. Getting you off medications, cleaning your sinuses out, give you a peace of mind that you can do well and have good results with a very minimally invasive procedure.
Jennifer Broome – Do you hear from people that this really is life-changing for them, you know from that life of the Sudafed and the Advil and all of that to keep the pain and pressure down and now they can breathe again?
Dr. Vincent Honrubia – I have patients that after they have the procedure they ask the nurse to lay them flat and they’ll breathe through their nose for the first time, laying flat and they’ll cry because I’ve never breathed through my nose laying flat, ever. Whenever I went to sleep, I was snoring, I couldn’t breathe. I’ve seen 250 pound men lay flat and start crying; I can breathe through my nose. So it is a very dramatic thing once your nose is open, you can breath better, less headaches, less drainage, less infections, better sleeping patterns.
Derrick Shore – You mentioned the headaches too, it’s not just about breathing. A lot of people have that pressure that leads to headaches, that really can distract you from your day and be debilitating.
Dr. Vincent Honrubia – That’s correct. So people that have chronic facial pain, headaches, drainage, even ear symptoms, ear popping, you do balloons with the ears as well. So there’s a variety of symptoms that you may not think connect to your sinuses but they are. Smell issues, headaches, sleeping problems, ear popping, sore throat, clearing the throat, all those can be related to the sinusis.
Derrick Shore – All connected. You guys are doing something really cool. You’re donating $10 of every co-pay toward the Harvey Relief Fund right?
Dr. Vincent Honrubia – Right, so we try to give some relief to the citizens of Houston. We’re taking $10 of each co-pay from each patient a donate the Hurricane Relief Fund here locally in Houston.
Jennifer Broome – And this is so easy. If you want more information, you want to talk about if this is right for you, you want to schedule an appointment, all you have to do is call 713-balloon,713-225-5666. You can also visit online. You guys have a really informative website online at americansinus.com. So that was really, it’s really helpful.
Derrick Shore – Yeah! worth looking into, for sure. Because I know when I moved to Houston I suddenly started having these issues.
Jennifer Broome – It’s a different world here. Air quality’s not the best, we have all these allergens and now these people have been in their houses cleaning out mold and drywall of the last couple of weeks.
Dr. Vincent Honrubia – Mold is a big deal in the sinuses; it’s a big deal, it’s bad. Sinuses do not like mold
Derrick Shore – Dr. Honrubia, thank you so much for stopping by.
Sinus surgery is a relatively common procedure performed on anyone who is suffering from chronic or acute sinusitis. If you’ve already tried other common sinus treatment options but are still suffering symptoms, it may be time to consider a surgical procedure.
When is Sinus Surgery Necessary?
Despite the fact that this procedure is performed regularly, most doctors consider surgery a last resort in your treatment regimen. You should never aim for sinus surgery until you have exhausted all other available treatment methods, including antibiotics, nasal rinses and other medications.
How to Know When Sinus Surgery Is Necessary
You will work with a sinus specialist in Houston, Texas, for an extended period of time before surgery is on the table. You may be sent for a CT scan by the American Sinus Institute. The CT scan will tell your doctor if there are any abnormalities or other causes of your sinus symptoms, but this isn’t necessarily a commitment to surgery.
It is important to note that some of your sinus symptoms may be caused by outside factors and will not improve with surgery alone. Usually, abnormalities and infections are treated with medication first. If the symptoms do not improve with time, then your doctor may decide that it’s time for surgery.
Use our quiz below to get a better idea of which symptoms you’re experiencing and how to best treat them:
If sinus surgery is your best option, your doctor will discuss with you all of the different types of sinus surgery currently available. You can read more about them in this blog. Once you’ve decided on a surgery that fits your needs, your doctor will instruct you on what you should and shouldn’t do as you prepare for your procedure.
What You Need to Know
While there are a variety of procedures being used today for sinus surgeries, there have been many significant advancements in sinus technology in the last few years. You can read more about how to choose the right treatment for you in our blog. Currently, the Honrubia technique for balloon sinuplasty is one of the most popular methods available because it is minimally invasive. If you are nearing the point where sinus surgery is the next logical step, visit our blog or call us today to learn more about the treatments we provide at the American Sinus Institute in San Antonio and Houston, Texas.
In the immediate aftermath of sinus surgery, there are a few simple do’s and don’ts that you need to be aware of. While your doctor will give you basic care instructions for your sinus surgery recovery period, it’s possible that you will be more focused on how you feel than thinking about the next two to three weeks. In general, you should be prepared to give your body several weeks to fully recover after your procedure.
Here are a few of the best sinus surgery recovery tips from the experts:
Get Home Safely
When you are ready to go home after your surgery, be prepared to have a responsible adult drive you home. Considering that you will have just undergone anesthesia, you likely won’t be in the right state of mind to drive or operate heavy machinery.
Take it Easy
During your recovery, it’s best that you exert as little effort as possible. Avoid pushing or pulling anything heavy, and try not to bend or strain your body in any way. Following these instructions will help you avoid potential complications such as nosebleeds.
Elevate Your Head
Following any kind of surgery or procedure, your sinus passages will likely become swollen. To help the swelling go down, it is important to keep your head elevated – even when you are sleeping. Plan on using some extra pillows to prop your head up at night.
Many people are forced to breathe through the mouth instead of the nose following their procedure, which leaves you with a dry mouth. Consume juicy fruits to keep your mouth moist, and drink plenty of water to stay hydrated.
Avoid drinking alcohol or other beverages that can dehydrate you or irritate your sinuses. You should also avoid spicy foods that are known to cause sinus drainage.
In the two weeks following your balloon sinuplasty procedure, there are certain medications you must take and must not take. For the ones that you must take, your doctor will provide you with specific post procedure medications and directions for you to follow.
After your sinus surgery, avoid taking blood-thinning medications such as aspirin, ibuprofen, Excedrin and Advil. Prescriptions like Heparin, Warfarin and Lovenox should also be avoided, as they are blood-thinners too. Finally, do not use any allergy medications or nasal sprays unless your doctor instructs you otherwise.
Check the Gauze Beneath Your Nose
Most likely, your doctor will place a small piece of gauze beneath your nose to catch any drainage that results during your balloon sinuplasty recovery. There may be a small amount of blood drainage as your sinus passages heal. You should keep an eye on the gauze and change it regularly. If you notice a significant amount of blood, contact your doctor immediately.
American Sinus Institute
The American Sinus Institute is happy to answer any of your questions and concerns about your recovery from sinus surgery.
Our Balloon Sinuplasty procedure is an excellent option for many patients and offers significant advantages over traditional sinus surgery. Balloon Sinuplasty is non-invasive and reshapes the sinus cavities via a balloon that has been inserted with a catheter and then inflated, rather than the cutting away of sinus tissue and subsequent stitches and gauze packing of traditional sinus surgery. As a non-invasive procedure, the recovery time from Balloon Sinuplasty is much shorter than that of traditional sinus surgery.
We have helped hundreds of patients breathe better, and we are confident that we can help you as well. Please contact us today to learn more.
Sinus surgery is quickly becoming one of the most common procedures performed across the nation. Sinus surgery is used to treat sufferers of acute and chronic sinus issues. Sinus infections are attributed with pain and discomfort in millions of Americans ever year, and now they have a way to fight back.
What is Sinus Surgery?
Sinus surgery is a procedure aimed at helping relieve sinus pressure in patients. The sinuses are tiny passageways connected to the nose and mouth which help purify the air we breathe.
Occasionally, our sinuses get blocked, which causes them to swell and exert pressure on the nerves of the face. This causes pain and makes it difficult to breathe, but it can also leave you with an uncomfortable drainage problem. If these problems persist, sinus surgery is used to re-open the sinus passageways and make it easier to breathe. So what does sinus surgery entail?
Types of Sinus Surgery
There are three main types of sinus surgery. Depending on the procedure you choose, here is a breakdown of what each sinus surgery is like:
Functional Endoscopic Surgery
Functional endoscopic surgery uses a tiny endoscope inserted through the nostrils to correct sinus problems. This is a true surgical procedure that actually involves cutting away sinus tissue and physically widening the sinus passageways. This procedure is very common and requires several days of recovery time.
Balloon sinuplasty is a newer procedure that uses a tiny balloon on the end of an endoscope to widen the sinus passages. Instead of cutting away tissue, the balloon gently inflates, pushing against the sinus tissue and causing it to compact against the walls of the sinuses. Since there is no cutting or removal of tissue, this process is typically less painful and requires less recovery time.
Open Sinus Surgery
In some extreme cases a doctor may opt to do open sinus surgery. This is an invasive procedure that often requires accessing the sinuses through an incision in the mouth or the face. This procedure can be used to correct sinus passages, as well as remove major blockages, such as bone spurs, that are causing problems.
Since the 1950s there have been several major advancements made in the sinus surgery industry. Starting with the introduction of the Functional Endoscopic Sinus Surgery (FESS), the technology and techniques used to relieve sinus pain have continued to improve over time. Today, there are a number of different options available to those who suffer from recurring sinus infections that are resistant to standard medications.
FESS & Image Guided Surgery
The most common form of sinus surgery involves using an endoscope through the nasal cavity to open up the passageways below the eye for better drainage. The FESS surgery is typically done as an outpatient procedure and has very few side effects. It is also a simpler, but more generalized approach to sinus relief when compared to the newer Image Guided surgery options.
Image Guided surgery is a more detailed form of the FESS, which uses infrared signals and CT scans to get a more accurate picture of the sinus cavities in real time. This allows doctors to precisely target areas of concern while minimizing risk to arteries and other tissues that don’t need to be removed. The advancements made in camera and telescopic technologies have allowed Image Guided surgery to become one of the most effective sinus surgery solutions on the market.
These types of sinus surgeries are usually the last resort after a patient has struggled with repeated and worsening sinusitis over time, but can also be an effective measure for those who have had tumors or polyps removed from their sinuses as well. In addition, the proximity of the sinus cavities to the optic nerves and major arteries means that sinus surgery can be helpful for those seeking optic nerve decompression and other related services.
In some cases, a malignancy or abnormality in the sinus passages may prevent normal drainage from taking place, while also making it impossible to successfully perform an FESS or Image Guided Surgery. In these cases, the Caldwell-Luc method was developed, which allows doctors to enter through the upper jaw and create a new passage between the maxillary sinus passage and the nose. This will allow for better drainage while still maintaining minimal side effects and recovery time.
Balloon Sinuplasty is the newest procedure in the sinus surgery world, offering patients the same sinus relief without any cutting or removal of sinus tissues. Instead, this method uses a small catheter and balloon that is inserted into the sinus cavity and inflated. As the balloon expands, it pushes the walls of the sinus cavity open and restructures them with a wider opening, without damaging the integrity of the lining of the sinus cavity.
After the opening is secured, a saline solution is used to flush out the buildup of mucus.The Honrubia technique goes one step further and uses full anesthesia to perform balloon sinuplasty on all sinus cavities in a single sitting, rather than performing multiple procedures over the course of several appointments. This method has faster and more complete results than any other type of balloon sinuplasty.
One of the biggest advantages of balloon sinuplasty is that it is far less invasive than traditional sinus surgeries, and can be performed in a regular office setting under a local anesthetic. It has been shown to have the same long-term success rate as the FESS surgery, and does not require ongoing treatment. However, the effectiveness of this method is limited, and may not be the answer for those suffering from facial trauma, cystic fibrosis or other severe illnesses.
As technology continues to improve, doctors are testing more effective and efficient methods of treating chronic sinusitis. Currently, patients are able to choose between an endoscopic procedure which removes sinus tissue, or balloon sinuplasty which compacts the sinus tissue and widens the passages. These are both effective outpatient procedures with low risk and positive results. For more complicated cases, the Caldwell-Luc method is available. It creates a new passageway, working around obstructions or malignant areas of the sinus.
If you have any questions about sinus surgery options, we invite you to contact the American Sinus Institute for more information. We recommend and specialize in the Honrubia technique for balloon sinuplasty.