Surgical Intervention for Allergies

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Surgical Intervention for Allergies

by | Sep 27, 2017

Allergy season is in full force, and many who suffer from them are looking for any remedy available. Unfortunately, there are some people that even the strongest medication cannot help. For this group, there may be a solution. Surgical intervention for allergy sufferers is a relatively common practice which attempts to ease the side effects brought on by allergies. There are numerous ways this can be achieved with varying levels of success. It should be noted that surgery does not fix allergies themselves, but rather aims to alleviate symptoms caused by allergies. This weeks blog will look at a few of the more common methods of surgical intervention to reduce allergic symptoms.

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Balloon Sinuplasty

While not technically a surgery, balloon sinuplasty is performed by a surgeon as a way to help open sinuses suffering from congestion. The surgeon inserts a small, flexible catheter with a balloon attached to the end into the nose and up to the sinuses. Once there, the balloon is inflated to expand the sinus cavity walls and a saline solution is injected to flush the area. Once all signs of congestion are clear, the surgeon removes the apparatus and the patient is sent on their way. Typically this procedure is used to treat issues like chronic sinusitis, but balloon sinuplasty may require multiple treatments throughout the high allergy season to be most effective as congestion will likely return.

Deviated Septum

Allergy sufferers with a deviated septum have an especially hard time when the weather changes. A deviated septum occurs when the nasal septum – the bone and cartilage which divide the nasal cavity – is severely off-center. This causes tremendous issues breathing through whichever nostril is blocked, especially when congestion from allergies is present. By fixing a deviated septum, those with allergies have the opportunity to breath more easily because the permanent blockage caused by the out of place cartilage and bone is removed. While it does not fix the problem of allergies, this surgery can be helpful in creating a clearer passageway through the nose.

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Rhinoplasty

Functional rhinoplasty is probably the most effective way to improve the working order of the nose. When people think of a rhinoplasty, they typically only consider the cosmetic side. While it’s true that this procedure can reshape the nose aesthetically, it can also be used to open up airways to make breathing easier. One of the most common ways this is achieved is in patients with large turbinates – structures on the side walls of the nasal passage which warm the air entering the nostrils. When these structures are large, they can obstruct air flow into the nasal passage. This problem is exacerbated in allergy sufferers who are already experiencing swelling in the nasal passages. Rhinoplasty may be a good option for some who experience problems breathing due to large turbinates.

Surgery is not a one-stop-shop for allergy sufferers. Talk to your surgeon about any concerns you have before undergoing nasal surgery to explore whether or not this option is right for you.

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