What causes nasal congestion?
Nasal congestion can be caused by a long list of factors. Among the most common are:
- An allergic reaction to environmental inhalants, as well as, foods
- Sinus infection
- Deviated Septum
- Nasal polyps
- Enlarged turbinates
When should I seek medical treatment for nasal congestion?
Medical intervention should be sought for nasal congestion that lasts longer than 10 days, or that is accompanied by symptoms like a high fever, sinus pain, or headache. Babies under the age of 2 months, whose congestion makes it difficult to breathe, eat or sleep, should always be evaluated by their doctor.
How do the providers at AAENT evaluate nasal congestion?
Our providers always begin by taking a medical history and detailed account of each patient’s symptoms, followed by a physical examination. In addition, our providers evaluate chronic nasal congestion (sinusitis) with the aid of a 3D CT scan, nasal endoscopy, and cultures, when necessary.
What treatment options do the providers at AAENT offer for nasal congestion?
Treatment will depend on the cause of your nasal congestion, but may include one or more of the following:
Generally, first-line treatment medications include nasal decongestants (oral or topical), antihistamines, corticosteroid sprays, or corticosteroid irrigations.
Typically done under local anesthesia, using a minimally invasive device inserted through a 2mm incision that removes bone and soft tissue. Like “liposuction of the nose.”
Septal Swell Body Reduction
A relatively new procedure performed under local anesthesia to reduce the part of the septum that swells due to irritants, allergies, or infections. Can be performed with a CO2 laser or the “nasal liposuction device.”
An outpatient procedure performed under general anesthesia, where the septum ( part of the wall of nose between the two sides of the nose) is straightened to allow improved airflow. This is typically done performed in conjunction with a turbinate reduction. Our providers uses a thin, flexible silicone splint and no packing. Patients are encouraged to rinse and gently blow their nose the day after surgery.
Nasal Valve Repair
An outpatient surgery that is performed under general anesthesia to repair collapsing nostrils. The procedure is performed by placing cartilage grafts from the septum or sometimes ears and using them to prevent collapse when breathing.
This is a relatively new, minimally-invasive procedure in which a flexible balloon is inserted into the sinus cavity via a catheter and inflated to enlarge and restructure the sinus opening to improve blocked drainage. This procedure is safe and can provide long-lasting results. Balloon Sinuplasty is performed under general anesthesia or local anesthesia on an outpatient basis. Downtime is minimal. Patients can typically return to work in just 24 hours.