Conditions and Treatments
What is Sinusitis?
Your sinuses are air-filled chambers within the bones of the face. There are four pairs of sinuses: the frontal, ethmoid, maxillary and sphenoid sinuses, forming an irregular, honeycomb structure. When they are working well, the sinuses constantly circulate air and produce/drain mucous which lupicates your nose and helps keep it clean. This drainage system can shut down when an underlying problem, such as colds, allergies or an obstruction causes blockages, resulting in nasal congestion, headache, pain and pressure around the face, lethargy, low-grade fevers, post-nasal discharge and post-nasal drip. During infections or allergy flare-ups, the cilia (tiny hair-like structures) can stop working and contribute to the build-up of fluid within the sinus cavities. This stagnant fluid is the perfect feeding ground for bacteria, fungus and viruses. Chronic sinusitis is the main disease in which the center specializes.
The Sinus & Allergy Center specializes in the medical and surgical treatment of diseases of the nose and sinuses including:
- Acute and chronic sinus infection
- Medical management of seasonal and year-round allergies
- Allergy immunotherapy - allergy shots and sub-lingual allergy drops
- Fungal infections of the sinuses
- Tumors of the nose and sinuses
- Nasal polyps
- Persistent disease after previous sinus surgery
- Sinus headache
- Complications of previous sinus surgeries
- Frontal and sphenoid sinusitis
- Nasal obstruction and deviated septum
- Blocked nasal passages
- Surgical management of Grave's eye disease
- Surgical correction of obstructed tear ducts
- Endoscopic skull base surgery
Advanced Sinus Care
At the Loma Linda Sinus and Allergy Center, our doctors have the highest level of training available in diseases of the nose and sinuses. We use the most modern and best tools in the diagnosis and management of our patients. This includes regular use of diagnostic nasal endoscopy and multi-planar CT scans.
Allergy Testing and Immunotherapy Management
Our office is set up to both diagnose patient with allergies and treat them. We have two nurses dedicated to allergy testing and administering allergy shots and drops. We can test for the most common pollen allergens in Southern California, animal dander, dust and mold allergens and over 40 different food allergies. Prior to undergoing immunotherapy, allergy testing lets patients know what allergens are affecting them. Once the problem-causing allergens are identified, the patient undergoes immunotherapy, or allergy shots, to build their tolerance and dull their reaction to allergens. We offer allergy shots five days a week and also are capable of mixing and administering sub-lingual drops.
Balloon Sinus Surgery
The Sinus and Allergy Center has been performing balloon sinus surgery since 2005 – the longest continuous experience in the United States. Most balloon cases are done in the clinic under a local anesthetic and allow rapid return to normal activities compared to conventional sinus surgery.
Computer-Assisted Sinus Surgery
Your surgeon may also suggest that your surgery include surgical navigation. This involves a special type of CT scan (which can be done in our office) and is paired with a computer in the operating room that functions much like a GPS system to improve accuracy and avoid complications in difficult sinus cases.
We believe that the best method to treat patients with sinus infections is to obtain endoscopically-guided cultures. Using cultures may result in more effective treatment or protect you from side effects when no antibiotic is required.
Severe or persistent epistaxis, or nosebleeds, can be treated via surgical reconstruction of the dividing wall of the nose (nasal septum) and arterial ligation.
Functional Endoscopic Sinus Surgery
Most cases of sinus-related diseases can be treated with medicines. However, in some cases surgery may also be needed. The most common type of surgery is called Functional Endoscopic Sinus Surgery (FESS).
During FESS, your surgeon will use small cameras and instruments to carefully work through your nostrils to reach your sinus disease. Obstructing tissues will be removed to allow the sinuses to drain more naturally which may decrease the severity, frequency and duration of your sinus symptoms. If surgery is recommended, the doctors at the Center will clearly explain the procedure, benefits, risks, post-op care and answer all your questions.
In-Office CT Scan
The Sinus and Allergy Center features its own cone-beam CT scanner. This type of CT utilizes a fraction of the radiation of a conventional CT scanner, and allows for immediate viewing of results.
Also referred to as somnoplasty, it is a minimally invasive surgical procedure used to treat habitual snoring. The procedure uses low levels of radiofrequency heat energy to reduce tissue volume in a precise and targeted manner. For chronic nasal obstruction, the turbinates are targeted, whereas obstructive sleep apnea involves targeting the base of the tongue.
A surgical procedure intended to relieve blockages or correct structural problems in the dividing wall (nasal septum) of the nose.
When blockage occurs in the tear duct, the system that carries tears away from the surface of the eye and into the nose, patients undergo surgery to reconstruct the passageway in order to reestablish normal tear drainage.
Turbinate Reduction Surgery
Enlarged turbinates the portion located on each side of your nose that cleans and humidifies the air we breathe are corrected via surgical procedure. The procedure corrects the problem of nasal obstruction, resulting in the improvement of nasal breathing as well as the reduction of nasal drainage and post-nasal drip.
A procedure that involves the removal of the excess tissue in the throat to open up the airway, enabling patients to breathe more easily while reducing snoring.