Your sinuses consist of empty chambers between the bones in your head. Normal sinuses produce and drain mucous without any problems. A sinus problem develops when one or more underlying problems, such as a cold or allergy, prevent your sinuses from draining properly. Other reasons to have sinus surgery are recurrent sinus infections, sinus obstructions such as a polyp (sac of swollen tissue), or a deviated septum (crooked partition of your nose).
There are two types of nasal surgeries, and both can improve drainage and relieve your symptoms. Endoscopic surgery involves the use of an endoscope, with or without the use of balloon dilation, which is a scope approximately 7 inches long with a light on the end that allows the surgeon to see into the sinuses in order to perform your surgery. This type of surgery can be done with little damage to surrounding tissue. Open surgery is often used to surgically clean out a lining that is seriously damaged. This procedure is more invasive and will allow your doctor to reach areas that cannot be reached with an endoscope. Open sinus surgery is rarely performed due to much less traumatic techniques involving the endoscope. Endoscopic sinus surgery with balloon dilation can be performed in the physician’s office in selected cases or under general anesthesia requiring more extensive sinus work.
You will wake up in the recovery room where nurses will be monitoring your vital signs until you are fully awake. Once the anesthesia has worn off, and there are no complications, you will be sent home to recover. A mild case of nausea and vomiting is to be expected and is one of the side effects of the anesthesia. You will receive post-op instructions to follow to help aid in your recovery as well as pain medication to use if pain is severe.
• Take extra care to not bump your nose
• Avoid bending over or lifting
• Do not blow your nose until the doctor okays it
• Avoid taking any medications containing aspirin as this can increase the chances of bleeding
• As there is usually no nasal packing and the nose can be irrigated beginning the first day after surgery with a salt water rinse such as NeilMed Sinus Rinse. Use distilled water with the irrigation solution. The irrigations will cause momentary fresh bleeding for the first several days.
• You will have a two-week post-op appointment at the clinic to make sure you are healing well
• Call the clinic if you have heavy bleeding, fever, yellow or green drainage, or an increase in pain, or any vision changes