Sinusitis
December 13, 2016 | by M. C. Chen MD


Balloon Sinuplasty™ is a breakthrough procedure designed to relieve the pain and pressure associated with chronic sinusitis and recurring acute sinusitis.

A Minimally Invasive Alternative to Traditional Sinus Surgery

In Balloon Sinuplasty, a specially designed catheter is inserted into the nose to reach the affected sinus cavity. A small balloon is advanced over the guidewire and slowly inflated, which widens and restructures the walls of the sinus passage, helping to drain retained mucous from the blocked sinus and restore normal sinus drainage without cutting soft tissue or removing bony tissue. This approach also preserves the natural structure of the sinuses.

How does Balloon Sinuplasty work?

Balloon Sinuplasty opens blocked left maxillary sinus cavities in four easy steps:

  1. A guidewire and balloon catheter are inserted into the inflamed sinus.
  2. The balloon is inflated to expand the sinus opening,
  3. Saline irrigation is introduced into the infected sinus cavity to flush out pus and mucus, and
  4. The system is removed, leaving the sinus drainage pathways open.

balloon sinuplasty

Who can benefit from Balloon Sinuplasty?

Balloon Sinuplasty safely and effectively treats sinusitis patients who are not responding well to medications, such as antibiotics, nasal steroids, or over-the-counter (OTC) drugs, and are seeking relief from uncomfortable and sometimes painful sinusitis symptoms. Since receiving FDA clearance in 2005, more than 500,000 patients have received Balloon Sinuplasty treatment.

Proven Symptom Relief

In the operating room:

  • A multi-center study of 1,036 patients who had Balloon Sinuplasty reported that sinus symptoms improved in 95 percent of patients and an average follow-up of nine months.
  • Another multi-center study followed 65 patients who had Balloon Sinuplasty and reported clinically and statistically significant improvement in patient’s symptoms over two years.

In the office:

  • 95 percent of patients who have had Balloon Sinuplasty say they would have it again.

Benefits of Balloon Sinuplasty:

  • Less pain than traditional sinus surgery
  • Same-day recovery
  • Lower out-of-pocket cost (most insurance companies and Medicare cover the procedure)
  • Select patients may be able to avoid general anesthesia
  • Preserve traditional endoscopic sinus surgical option

Ask Your Doctor if You’re a Candidate

If you are suffering from chronic sinusitis and have not found adequate relief from medical therapy, you may be a candidate for Balloon Sinuplasty. Talk with your primary care doctor about a possible referral to our office. My partners, Drs. Dewayne Bradley and Felix Chu, and I all perform the procedure as an outpatient procedure at First Hill Surgery Center. We hope to offer it to select patients in our office under local anesthesia in the future. You can reach us at 206-860-2384.

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Written By: M. C. Chen MD