Nasal polyps are growths that aren’t dangerous, but may cause health conditions if they aren’t treated quickly.
What Are Nasal Polyps?
Nasal polyps are soft and painless non-cancerous growths, and they hang down like teardrops or grapes inside the nasal cavity. Nasal polyps are associated with inflammation of the lining of the nasal passages or sinuses that last more than 12 weeks.
Small nasal polyps may not cause symptoms; however, large nasal polyps can block your nasal packages leading to breathing problems, a loss of sense of smell, and frequent sinus infections.
Why Do Nasal Polyps Occur?
Nasal polyps occur due to extended periods of inflammation and irritation in your nasal cavity. Although there is no definite reason why inflammation occurs in the first place, some scientists believe a weakened immune system may be a factor.
Regardless of how they are formed, it is important to know that the nasal polyps are soft and painless, and they hang down like teardrops or grapes within the sinus cavity. They may form at any age and anywhere in the sinus region, starting from near the eyes to your nose to your cheekbones.
Symptoms of Nasal Polyps
You may have nasal polyps if you experience the following symptoms:
- Persistently runny or stuffy nose
- Post-nasal drip
- Absence of smell and taste
- Frequent nosebleeds
- Pain in and around your nose, under your eyes, and around your cheekbones
- Feeling of pressure on your forehead and glabella
- Double vision & itchiness around the eyes
- Loud snoring
- Sleep apnea (in severe cases)
Treating Nasal Polyps With Surgery
Nasal polyps, if untreated, may block the nasal cavity and prevent the drainage of liquids from your sinuses. This can create severe breathing problems and reduce the quality of your life.
The goal of treatment is to reduce the size or eliminate the nasal polyps. Medications can be effective at shrinking or eliminating nasal polyps, but surgery is sometimes needed to remove the polyps.
What To Expect
Before treatment, our team of specialists will conduct a nasal endoscopy, in which a tiny camera mounted on a small tube is inserted into your nasal cavity to identify the number and size of the polyps.
Other tests may be conducted as necessary. Once the growths have been identified, our surgeons will design a customized treatment plan for you.
An endoscopic surgery is performed to resect the nasal polyps. This ensures that you are nor subjected to an invasive surgery. It also reduces the recovery time tremendously.
Before the surgery, you will be administered a general anesthetic. Next, the doctor will insert a tiny endoscope into your sinus cavity to get visualization of the growths. Tiny surgical instruments are then inserted into the cavity and the nasal polyps are removed. Any blockages in the sinus cavity are also drained.
After the procedure, our doctors may use a corticosteroid nasal spray to facilitate healing. It is not uncommon for nasal polyps to return, but the spray can slow down the rate of regrowth.
Nasal Polyps Surgery Aftercare
It may take a few weeks to heal after your procedure. During this time, you may be advised to use saltwater to rinse your nasal cavity to remove any irritants and blockages. You will be provided with medication, if necessary and be taught best hygiene practices to protect your nasal cavity.
If you have any questions about recovery and aftercare, be sure to reach out to one of our surgeons.
Schedule Your Consultation Today
If you think you could benefit from nasal polyps surgery, contact the office of the ENT Associates of San Diego today. Our friendly staff will be happy to answers any questions you may have and can help you set up a consultation with one of our board-certified surgeons.