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About sinus surgery (sinuplasty)

If you have chronic sinus problems and have tried non-surgical remedies like nasal irrigation, corticosteroids, antibiotics, or immunotherapy with disappointing results, a sinuplasty may be your answer.

Sinus inflammation can cause chronic sinusitis, nasal infections, and breathing problems. The sinus surgery known as sinuplasty can open your inflamed nasal passages, improving the flow of oxygen and providing long-term relief from your sinus issues.

At Starkman Facial Plastic & Laser Surgery, fellowship-trained facial plastic surgeon Sidney Starkman performs functional endoscopic sinus surgery (FESS) to open the natural pathways to the sinuses. This nasal surgery is purely functional and is done to remove obstructions, such as nasal polyps and excess tissue.

Why choose Dr. Starkman for sinus surgery?

For patients seeking the best in sinus surgery, Scottsdale's Dr. Starkman is a board-certified facial plastic surgeon. Dr. Starkman offers an impressive background, having trained in both Otolaryngology—Head and Neck Surgery, as well as Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery. This training, combined with his years of experience delivering specialized facial procedures, gives him a distinct advantage over general plastic surgeons. Between Dr. Starkman’s consummate skill and our leading-edge, AAAHC-accredited surgery center, we offer our patients an experience that is a cut above.

Sinus Surgery Scottsdale

Ideal candidates for sinus surgery

If you have suffered from sinus issues with little to no relief from over-the-counter remedies, corticosteroids, and antibiotics, you are likely a great candidate for sinus surgery. Dr. Starkman performs a minimally invasive endoscopic procedure that can alleviate the symptoms of:

  • Chronic sinus infections
  • Chronic allergies
  • Chronic sinusitis
  • Nasal polyps
  • Nasal pressure
  • Sinus pressure

To be an ideal endoscopic sinus surgery Scottsdale patient, you should be in overall good health and free from infections (except possible sinus infections). You should also abstain from smoking.

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Surgical technique during sinus surgery

Dr. Starkman performs endoscopic sinus surgery as an outpatient procedure at his on-site surgical facility with either nitrous oxide or twilight anesthesia. Depending on the degree of your sinus disease, the surgery can take from 30 minutes to 2 hours.

During endoscopic sinus surgery, Dr. Starkman will insert an endoscope (an extremely fine fiber-optic tube) into one nostril at a time in order to examine the opening of your sinuses. Viewing the inside of your sinuses in this way allows Dr. Starkman to remove excess tissue, polyps, or other blockages without having to create any external incisions.

Endoscopic sinus surgery is a welcome alternative to traditional sinus surgeries for many patients because it is less invasive and causes less discomfort and swelling. After spending just a bit of time in Dr. Starkman's recovery room, you will be released to a friend or family member to rest and heal at home. 

Contact the office of Dr. Starkman to receive some of the best septoplasty Scottsdale has to offer. 

What to expect following sinus surgery

After your sinus surgery, your nostrils will be coated with a gel solution to stop any potential nose bleeding. This gel will dissolve when you begin to use saline nasal spray the day after your surgery. In some cases, if more extensive tissue has been removed, you may need to have packing placed inside your nostrils for about a week.

This packing will generally be removed at your first post-op appointment with Dr. Starkman, which should be scheduled about a week after your surgery. Dr. Starkman will examine the progress of your healing and may recommend that you begin nasal irrigation to prevent any crusting inside your nostrils and sinuses.

It is very important that you begin liberal use of nasal saline (salt water) spray the day after your sinuplasty, even if you have packing. This salt-water spray is necessary to dissolve any blood, mucous, or gel left in your nose. It will also significantly help you breathe through your nose (if you do not have packing), reduce swelling, and speed up your recovery. Most patients don't report much discomfort or pain in the first 18 – 24 hours after surgery but then need some pain medication during the following 3 – 4 days.


How much does sinus surgery cost?

Sinuplasty costs will vary, depending on how complex your surgery is and whether you are combining it with a septoplasty or rhinoplasty. In some cases, a standalone sinuplasty that is deemed medically necessary may be covered by insurance, so let Dr. Starkman know if you plan to file an insurance claim. During your consultation, Dr. Starkman can go over the details of your procedure and talk about your estimated costs.

What is a nasal endoscope?

An endoscope is a thin, flexible tube that holds a tiny light and camera. It can comfortably (with anesthetic) be inserted into your nose to view your nasal and sinus cavities. It allows your doctor to observe the inside of your nose and remove any obstructing tissue or polyps without making any external incisions.

How soon will I feel better?

You will likely feel very stuffy or congested for about a week after your surgery, mostly due to the swelling caused by the procedure. Some people feel well enough to return to work after about three days, though depending on the complexity of your sinuplasty, it may be closer to two weeks. Typically, you should notice less sinus pain and much easier breathing at the ten-day mark, though it could take a month or two for all your symptoms to improve.

Are sinus surgery results long-lasting?

For the most part, sinuplasty should be able to eliminate the underlying reasons for your chronic issues. Once these underlying problems are removed, the symptoms you were experiencing should not return. However, the exception is nasal polyps caused by chronic allergies. It is possible for polyps to grow back, so you may need to have new polyps removed later.

Does sinus surgery have any side effects?

Sinus surgery rarely causes any serious side effects. Some people experience numbness or pain in their front teeth, as well as in the roof of the mouth; however, these are very temporary and disappear as you heal. You may also experience headaches, similar to sinus pressure headaches, as you heal from your procedure. These should abate once your swelling goes down after a few days.

Relieve your chronic sinusitis

Sinusitis and sinus infections are fairly common, especially during allergy season. However, if you suffer from chronic sinus problems but can't get any relief from typical remedies, like antibiotics, steroids, decongestants, and nasal sprays, a sinuplasty could help. Dr. Starkman specializes in facial and nasal plastic surgery so he has a deep understanding of how chronic sinus issues can affect your quality of life. Make an appointment at Starkman Facial Plastic & Laser Surgery in Scottsdale, AZ today for your sinuplasty consultation.

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