Sinus surgery

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Dave Smith, Jan 11, 2002.

  1. Dave Smith

    Dave Smith Stunt Coordinator

    Dec 29, 2000
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    Looks like I need it [​IMG]
    I've heard plenty of bad things about this procedure. If anyone's had it in the past, and has anything remotely not horrible to say to make me feel better about it, please do so.
    If you have any horror stories, please keep them to yourself... I'm squeamish enough!
  2. Kelley_B

    Kelley_B Cinematographer

    Feb 27, 2001
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    my fiance had this and she said it helped her out a lot, and it didn't really hurt all that much. The worst part she said was the fact that it took more than a month for her to feel any benefit from the operation.
  3. Dave_P

    Dave_P Stunt Coordinator

    Apr 13, 2000
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    You may want to search around about this a little. I seem to remember reading online some where about a new procedure they are beginning to use that is less intrusive then older procedures. I have a deviated septum myself and have been thinking about having something done for the last year or so. I want to be able to sleep with my mouth closed again. It's a really uncomfortable feeling.
  4. Mike Broadman

    Mike Broadman Producer

    Aug 24, 2001
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    I've had it.

    Ever since I was a kid, my nose would get all stuffy and it was awful. Last year it got so bad that I finally decided to do something about it, but I actually had the surgery this past summer.

    First of all, it's important to figure out what exactly is the problem. If it's mostly due to allergies, than no surgery can help, and you'll have to start taking medication regularly (Claritin, Rhinocort).

    My doctor put me on allergy medication for a month. It helped a little. I then went to see an ENT guy, and he determined that I had structural problems as well as allergies. Lucky me.

    I had a deviated septom toward the left side. On top of that, I also had a swollen something-or-other (I can't remember what it's called- they're these tuby things in your nose that air passes around) on the right side.

    The surgery involved straighteing the septom and removing some bone or cartalidge from the tuby-thing.

    It lasted an hour or two. Of course, I was under the gas. I generally don't handle anasthesia well, so it was a tough day. After the surgery, the doc had placed plastic splints up my nose to hold everything in place. 90% of people have relatively easy, if uncomfortable, recoveries. My fabulous luck, of course, dropped me in the other 10%.

    The night of the surgery, I was bleeding a lot from the right side. I got to the hospital and the doc replaced the plastic splints with hard cotton, completely clogging my nostrils. Actually, he took one whole "plug," cut it in half, and put each half in one nostril. This, he said, should be enough for the vast majority of people.

    Sure enough, I was bleeding again that night, and again from the right side. The tuby-thingy was simply rejecting treatment. This time, the doc placed an entire plug in the right side. It was about 3 inches long and went all the way up my nose. Placing it in my nostril was accomplished simply by jamming it up in there real good, and applying some water to allow it to assume the proper shape to fit the nostril. This was more than uncomfortable: this freakin' hurt. I got some painkillers and was sent on my merry way.

    I spent the rest of the week hopped up on medication and either sleeping or in pain. I told my boss I could do some work from home during my recovery: well, that certainly didn't happen.

    I experienced possibly the worst case recovery scanario of a successful nasal surgery one can have. I'm telling you all this to convey one important thing: it was totally, absolutely worth it.

    Before the surgery, my nose drove me nuts. I'd have to always carry tissues around with me. I almost always had to breathe through my mouth, which made me look stupid because I was often slack-jawed. A couple of times, I even had to blow my nose while making love. Definitely a mood killer.

    Now, well, I'm a normal person. I can actually breathe through my nose, the way god intended. It's not perfect, because I still have allergies. I have a stock of Rhinocort and Claretin if it gets really bad, but I've only had to take them a few times since the surgery.

    Chances are, your recovery won't be as bad as mine. For one thing, I had two seperate structural problems, which doubled the complication. In fact, the septom caused no problem: it was all on the other side.

    I was also lucky to have an excellent surgeon and my parents were around those first couple of days to help out.

    If you have a deviated septom, remember that after the surgery, it won't be 100% straight, so one side may feel slightly better than the other. But you shouldn't be going for perfect- if your nose is a serious hassle now, you'll want to improve to the point where you can breathe and behave normally.

    There are a lot of cases of botched surgeries. This is always due to error on the surgeon's part, so make sure you get an experienced one. It is a very delicate procedure. My surgeon himself underwent the procesess and had it botched. So when you talk to a surgeon, make sure you ask him how long he's been doing it, what his "track record" is, etc.

    Good luck.

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