How are nasal polyps removed?
The surgical removal of nasal polyps is known as nasal polypectomy.
The procedure is mainly performed under local anesthesia or general anesthesia. The physician relieves congestion of the nose using oxymetazoline drops or pellets. The polyps are removed with the help of polyp forceps without injuring the surrounding tissue. Generally, polyps are removed from inside to the outside to prevent bleeding. Absorbable packing may be placed sideways to the nasal opening to absorb any blood.
In endoscopic surgery, the surgeon inserts a small tube with a tiny camera (an endoscope) into the nostrils and guides it into the sinus cavities. A tiny instrument that is attached is used to remove polyps or other tissues that block the flow of fluids from the sinuses. Endoscopic surgery avoids the need to make an external incision on the face.
A corticosteroid nasal spray may prevent the recurrence of nasal polyps. The surgeon may also recommend the use of saline water rinse to encourage post-surgery healing for the next three days.
What are nasal polyps?
Nasal polyps are teardrop-like, clustered noncancerous growths that line the nasal passages and sinuses. They are mostly soft and painless and are usually associated with
Larger nasal polyps can lead to the following
- Breathing problems
- Anosmia (loss of sense of smell)
- Frequent infections
- Hyposmia (decreased sense of smell)
- Facial pain
- Pain in the upper teeth
- Frequent nosebleeds
- Persistent stuffiness
- Postnasal drip
- Pressure feeling over the forehead or face
Nasal polyps are mostly seen in adults. However, they can affect individuals of any age.
Conditions often associated with nasal polyps include
- Aspirin sensitivity
- Allergic fungal sinusitis (allergy to airborne fungi)
- Cystic fibrosis (a genetic disorder that results in production of thick, sticky fluids in the body)
- Churg-Strauss syndrome (a disease that causes inflammation of the blood vessels)
- Vitamin-D deficiency
What is a nasal polypectomy?
Nasal polypectomy is a surgical procedure to remove nasal polyps in the nasal passages. Nasal polyps affect 2% to 5% of the population. It is indicated for uncontrolled symptoms or symptoms that are not controlled by medications.
Nasal polypectomy should be avoided in patients with the following conditions
- Heart disease
- Lung disease
- Bleeding disorders
- Poorly controlled diabetes
- Asymptomatic diseases
What are the complications of nasal polypectomy?
The possible complications of nasal polypectomy include
- Local infection
- Eye problems
- Cerebrospinal fluid leaks (leakage of fluid present in the spinal cord and brain)
- Synechia (adhesion of body parts)
- Nasofrontal duct stenosis (obstruction in the passage connecting the sinus with the cavity of the nose)
- Mucocele (mucus-filled cyst that may appear in the oral cavity)
Can nasal polyps be prevented?
The following strategies may reduce your chances of developing nasal polyps
- Practice good hygiene: Wash your hands regularly and thoroughly. Avoid nose picking. This is one of the best ways to protect against bacterial and viral infections that can cause inflammation of the nasal passages and sinuses.
- Manage allergies and asthma: Always discuss your optimal medicine doses with your doctor and follow your medication schedule.
- Avoid nasal irritants: Allergens, tobacco smoke, chemical fumes, incense, dust and fine debris may make you prone to allergies. Try and stay away from those.
- Humidify your home: Use a humidifier to help moisten your breathing passages, improve the flow of mucus from your sinuses and help prevent blockages and inflammation. Clean the humidifier daily to prevent bacteria from growing.
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