Balloon Sinuplasty – Less Invasive, Quicker Recovery
Current statistics reveal that approximately 134 million people in India are affected with chronic sinusitis/rhinosinusitis which translates to about one in eight people being plagued with an unhealthy sinus. In metros like Delhi, Bangalore and Mumbai the proportion is higher due to increasing levels of pollution and lack of green spaces and fresh air.
There are four types of sinuses which are hollow cavities in the bones around the cheek bones and eyes and each sinus has an opening through which the accumulated mucus drains. Normal sinuses help in cleaning up the air one breathes, much like the filter in a carburetor of an automobile. Sinusitis occurs when this drainage is blocked due to allergic reactions, microbial infections etc.
The most widely used surgical procedure to treat blocked sinuses is functional endoscopic sinus surgery (FESS). However, although FESS clears blocked sinuses, normal functioning of the sinuses may still be affected. FESS, which entails removal of the bone and tissue also results in scarring, bleeding and post-operative discomfort to the patient.
Of late, Balloon sinuplasty is the most effective,clinically proven and minimally invasive method to treat blocked sinuses since it combines endoscopic technique with emerging technology.
Ballon sinuplasty uses a small, flexible, sinus balloon catheter which is placed into the nose to reach the sinuses. The balloon catheter is gradually inflated to clear the previously-blocked sinus passage, while taking care to maintain the integrity of the sinus lining and and thus restore normal sinus drainage and function. The advantages of this over conventional surgery are that it is much less riskier with no adverse events being reported. Patients also report significant relief from their symptoms at follow-up appointments.
The advantages of Balloon sinuplasty are manifold in that it is less invasive, has less pain, less scarring, less bleeding, less recovery time (just 24 hours for most patients), and less follow-up procedures. It can be used safely alongside other medical therapies or sinus surgery techniques. It does not limit future treatment options, and is safer for people who are prone to excessive bleeding or those in the ICU.