37 Million Americans Afflicted With Sinusitis

Monday, November 23, 2009

A clinically proven, minimally invasive technology for treating chronic sinus inflammation is available at Baptist. The Balloon Sinuplasty™ system by Acclarent™ uses a small catheter and balloon to quickly open and expand blocked sinuses.

Sinusitis is one of the most common chronic health problems in the U.S., afflicting 37 million Americans each year. Patients suffer headaches, congestion, fatigue and other symptoms. This condition significantly impacts an individual's physical, functional, and emotional quality of life.

Until recently, sinusitis patients were limited to two treatment options: medical therapy such as antibiotics and topical nasal steroids, or conventional sinus surgery such as Functional Endoscopic Sinus Surgery (FESS). Medical therapy can help alleviate symptoms for 75-80 percent of patients but is inadequate for the rest. For them, sinus surgery is often the best option. However, FESS is a conventional surgery that requires bone and tissue removal in order to open up blocked sinus passageways. In lieu of a desired treatment, more than 600,000 patients elect to live with painful sinus conditions.

Now, there is an evolution in endoscopic sinus surgery with the Balloon Sinuplasty™ technology by Acclarent™. A small, flexible balloon catheter is placed through a nostril into the blocked sinus passageway. The balloon is then inflated to gently restructure and open the sinus passageway, restoring normal sinus drainage and function.

Otolaryngologist William Sneed, MD, is one of the first physicians in this area to offer this technology. He says, "The Balloon Sinuplasty™ is a true advance in sinus care because in many cases it can be done without removing any tissue or bone. That means faster recovery times and less post-procedure discomfort. In fact, many of my patients have been able to return to normal activities within 24 hours and have had significant improvement in their symptoms."

The international, multi-center study call CLEAR stands for The CLinical Evaluation to Confirm SAfety and Efficacy of Sinuplasty in the PaRanasal Sinuses. It confirmed in the July 2007 issue of the prestigious journal, Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery, earlier rigorous clinical validation that the Balloon Sinuplasty™ instruments by Acclarent™ are safe and effective for opening blocked sinuses. The CLEAR study reported 24-week results on 109 patients, which demonstrated:

* 0% adverse event rate

* 96.9% successful ostial dilation

* 98% observed ostial patency rate

* 81% overall patency rate (17% of ostia indeterminate due to anatomical preservation)

* Clinically and statistically significant improvement in patient symptoms

Sinusitis patients who are considering their options can learn more about the Balloon Sinuplasty™ technology by Acclarent™ by contacting Baptist Health Line at 601-948-6262.

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