Balloon Sinuplasty FAQ

Sinus & Allergy Center

Curious about balloon sinuplasty? Below are answers to frequently asked questions about this in-office procedure that has brought sinus relief to so many people. Just click on a question to view the answer.

Balloon Sinuplasty is a breakthrough procedure that can be performed under local anesthesia in the office. In select patients, it relieves the pain and pressure associated with chronic sinusitis. This procedure uses a small balloon to expand the blocked sinus openings, thereby providing relief from uncomfortable and painful sinusitis symptoms, allowing access to topical medications into the sinuses, and preventing the build-up of mucus that precedes the sinus infection. It is a quick and effective procedure that requires minimal recovery time. Studies showed improvement in 95% of patients who had Balloon Sinuplasty.

Most chronic sinusitis patients report clinically meaningful improvement in sinus symptoms and quality of life for at least 2 years following the procedure, and our experience is that once the anatomic blockage is resolved, symptomatic relief typically persists indefinitely.

While recovery time will vary from patient to patient, many people can return to normal activities within 24 hours after balloon sinuplasty.

Nationwide, Balloon Sinuplasty has been adopted by thousands of ENT doctors and has been performed safely on over 300,000 patients with excellent long term results. Complications from or after Balloon Sinuplasty are rare.

Local anesthetic is used, so you will be awake during the procedure and comfortable. You will feel some pressure when the balloon is gently inflated in your sinus passage and you may hear a crackling sound.

Many people report little discomfort during the procedure and after.

When balloon sinuplasty is done alone, local anesthetic is used, so you will be awake during the procedure and comfortable. There are times when the balloon sinuplasty is recommended to be performed in combination with other procedures such as septoplasty or inferior turbinate hypertrophy which may require general anesthesia.

Balloon sinuplasty typically takes about one hour.

After applying the anesthetic and waiting for about 20 minutes, the doctor will:

  • Place a small balloon in the sinus opening
  • Gently inflate the balloon for about five seconds to expand the opening and restore drainage
  • Deflate and remove the balloon
  • Treat the next sinus as needed

Yes. Medicare covers endoscopic sinus surgery when any combination of tools, including a balloon catheter, is used to perform the procedure.

Most insurance companies cover sinus surgery with Balloon Sinuplasty devices. To be certain of your coverage, contact your insurance provider to find out your specific coverage policy.

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