Sinus Surgery for Sinusitis
In traditional sinus surgery, an opening is
made into the sinus. The opening may be made from inside the mouth or through
the skin of the face.
- There are a number of possible approaches
depending on the location of the infected sinus and what the doctor
- Working through the incision, the doctor can remove tissue
that is blocking the sinus and preventing drainage.
- More extensive
procedures may involve leaving a temporary opening to help drain the
Most of these procedures require admission to a
What To Expect After Surgery
Recovery from surgery may
- Packing the nose with gauze to absorb blood and
other drainage. The packing may be changed several times a day or left in place
for a few days.
saltwater nasal washes (saline lavage or irrigation)
to keep the sinuses moist.
- Avoiding activities such as blowing the
nose, strenuous exercise, and bending forward for a few days.
a humidifier to keep room air moist, especially in the bedroom.
Why It Is Done
Traditional sinus surgery may be done
How Well It Works
Traditional surgery is an effective
method of treating chronic sinusitis or sinusitis that has caused
Serious risks include:
- Heavy bleeding.
- Leakage of the
fluid that surrounds the brain and spinal cord.
- Inflammation of the
membrane that covers the brain
What To Think About
Endoscopic surgery has become the
standard type of surgery done for chronic sinusitis. But traditional surgery is
still the best choice in certain cases. The type of surgery you have will
depend on which sinuses are affected and how severely they are damaged.1 To learn more, see the topic Endoscopic Surgery for
Surgical treatment of sinusitis should be considered
only when more conservative approaches, such as home treatment and medications,
Complete the surgery information form (PDF)(What is a PDF document?) to help you prepare for this surgery.
Joint Council of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology (2005). The diagnosis and management of sinusitis: A practice parameter update. Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, 116(6 Suppl): S13–S47.
Primary Medical Reviewer
||Patrice Burgess, MD - Family Medicine
Specialist Medical Reviewer
||Donald R. Mintz, MD - Otolaryngology
Current as of
||September 12, 2012