Balloon Sinus Surgery FAQ
Do you suffer from sinusitis that lasts for up to 12 weeks at the time? Do you have four or more bouts of sinusitis each year? Does it seem that you get one sinus infection cleared only to have another one start?
If you are wondering if balloon sinus surgery (balloon sinuplasty or BSP) and have questions about this procedure you’ve come to the right place. We have answers to your questions.
Is it safe? BSP is FDA approved and has been performed over 350,000 times. All surgery carries risk, but because balloon sinus surgery is minimally invasive and can be performed under local anesthetic the risks are greatly reduced.
Do I have to stay in the hospital? No. We perform balloon sinus surgery under a local anesthetic right in our offices. You don’t need to go to the hospital, and you don’t need to stay overnight.
How long does it take? The time it takes to perform the procedure varies depending on the sinuses and the patient. Generally, the procedure doesn’t take much more than 1 to ½ hours. Plan on spending a more time than that in the office.
Does it hurt? This is the most common question we get. We will make sure that you are relaxed and the area is completely numb before the procedure begins. When the balloon is inflated you may feel some pressure, but you will not feel pain.
Can I drive myself home? If no pre-procedure sedative was used you should be able to drive home in about 15 minutes or so after the procedure.
Will I have bruises around my eyes? The procedure will not cause bruising around your eyes. It will not cause bruising any place on your body.
Will I have swelling? You may experience some swelling in the days after your procedure. Sleeping with your head elevated and using saline rinses will help.
Will my nose look different? The procedure will not change the outward appearance of your nose. Once your recovery is complete, you will look exactly the same to your friends and co-workers.
Will I have to have nasal packing? Your surgery will be on your sinuses, not your nasal passages. Nasal packing will not be necessary.
How long is recovery? Most people can resume normal activities in about two days.
I take medication for another condition. Can I still have the procedure? When you visit the ENT to discuss balloon sinus surgery, be sure to bring along a list of all medications and supplements you take and the frequency of the dose. You will need to stop taking some medications days (like warfarin) or weeks (like adalimumab) before the procedure can be performed.
How does the balloon make the sinus stay open? Good question! Once inflated, the balloon makes very small micro-fractures to the bone. The bone keeps this position as it heals. This is why the procedure can be a permanent treatment for many.
I have a deviated septum. Will this surgery help? Your problem is a nasal problem, not a sinus problem. The ENT can help, but they will use a different procedure for your condition.
How long does the relief last? Most patients report they are still symptom free after two years. You should have relief for years to come.
Is balloon sinus surgery covered by insurance? Medicare and most private insurance covers the procedure.
How do I get started? Locate your local ENT office and schedule a consultation today!