After Sinus Surgery

November 12, 2012

After Sinus Surgery

Although most people only turn to sinus surgery as a final resort, those who have no choice in the matter usually wonder about what they can expect after sinus surgery.

What to Expect

Well, some things you can expect after sinus surgery would include mild headaches, some blood oozing from your nose and sinus congestion. However, these problems aren’t huge. At most, you might need to take two weeks off to rest from your job, but that’s about it. Sinus surgery is usually done under local or general anesthesia, and patients can go home right after the procedure, as well. Most of the time, nasal packing isn’t required and absorbable packing is available, too. Overall, sinus pain isn’t extreme, either. Although it is true that it could take a few months for you to completely recover after the surgery, you shouldn’t feel a lot of pain at all. Some people do take whole years to fully appreciate the positive effects of the procedure, though.

Potential Risks and Complications

The majority of complications that appear after sinus surgery are usually related to bleeding, anesthesia, and infection risks. Urgent cases of bleeding are very rare, but they do happen. If the bleeding happens during surgery itself, nasal packing can help control it. Sinus infections after the procedure, on the other hand, can be effectively treated with the right kind of antibiotics.

As for anesthesia risks, they are usually associated with stroke, cardiac arrest, and death. Even though these cases are rare, as well, it would still be advisable to get proper medical evaluation and clearance from a cardiologist before getting your surgery done – especially if your history includes diabetes, high blood pressure, hyperlipidemia, or cardiac disease.

Some patients have also reported more serious complications, like brain and eye injuries during surgery, but these are rare, too, and usually only happen if somebody inexperiences performs the surgery.

Other potential complications after sinus surgery would include voice quality changes and a loss of smell. Sometimes, voice changes can be noticed, as well, if the sinus’s physical structure went through some big changes during the surgery. This shouldn’t be a big problem if you aren’t a voice professional, though.

How to Ensure Proper Recovery

After sinus surgery, it would be vital to follow the right kind of post-surgery care. This means that you have to visit your doctor frequently after the first couple of weeks, so you an be properly examined and so you can get your sinuses and nose cleaned out. Aside from that, sterile saline solutions for sinus irrigation would be vital, as well. If possible, elevate your head while you sleep for a few days after your surgery, too, so your nose can get a better flow of air into it. Also, do not blow your nose too much and avoid contact sports or heavy exercises for a couple of weeks after the surgery to prevent unwanted bleeding.

Overall, doctors would urge anybody who has chronic sinusitis to get sinus surgery. Naturally, you will have to find a good and experienced surgeon to do the work, though, and keep in mind that patience is key. Keeping your allergies under control and learning how sinus irrigations work, for example, play a huge part in your recovery. In other words, although sinus surgery works, in general, you do need to work on keeping your nose and your sinuses healthy as time goes by.

Sinus surgery would also be very effective for chronic sinusitis if medical treatments, like prolonged antibiotics courses, have failed. Keep in mind that it might take a few months to recover after sinus surgery, though, and you will need to keep working with your doctor, as well.

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