Sinusitis is when the sinuses (the hollow spaces behind the forehead, nasal bones, cheeks, and eyes) become inflamed or swollen. Acute sinusitis, more commonly known as a sinus infection, will typically go away fairly quickly on its own or with the help of medication.

But when the inflammation or swelling lasts for 12 weeks or longer, it is called chronic sinusitis. In these cases, there could be a pressing underlying issue requiring more advanced treatments or surgery.

Diagnosis and Treatment at the Ocean Surgery Center

At the Ocean Surgery Center in Torrance, CA, we have many different types of board-certified physicians standing by to address a wide range of patient needs. If you believe you may have chronic sinusitis, it’s important to speak with one of our experienced otolaryngologists (ear, nose, and throat doctors) for a proper diagnosis.

During this process, your medical history will be thoroughly reviewed, and your symptoms will be carefully examined. Depending on your symptoms, your provider could also order imaging, take samples for testing, run an allergy test, and/or perform a nasal endoscopy to assess your condition accurately. From there, we might recommend surgery in the following instances:

Prevention and Non-Surgical Methods Not Working

Surgery is usually only performed when all other treatment strategies are ineffective. If your chronic sinusitis is just caused by inflammation or swelling, we may suggest environmental changes like avoiding things you’re allergic to or behavior adjustments such as using a humidifier or quitting smoking.

When these symptoms persist, we could prescribe one or more non-surgical alternatives:

  • Nasal sprays
  • Saline rinses
  • Allergy medicine
  • Corticosteroids or medications for polyps
  • Antibiotics
  • Immunotherapy
  • Balloon sinuplasty

Significant and Ongoing Swelling or Growths

If there is so much long-term sinus tissue swelling that no other treatments are working, there is the risk of trapped mucus or fluid causing a major infection. In addition, polyps and benign tumors frequently must be surgically removed.

During functional endoscopic sinusitis surgery (FESS), your doctor will use a nasal endoscope to remove any problematic polyps or tumors, as well as unnecessary tissue blocking the sinus cavities.

Deviated Septum

The septum is the wall of skin, cartilage, and bone separating the two nostrils. Proper airflow and sinus drainage can be affected if the septum is bent or curved. Septoplasty surgery is performed to realign or fix the septum’s positioning.

Fungal Balls

Sinus infections are not only caused by bacteria and viruses. Occasionally, clumps of fungal infection can build up in and block the sinuses, forming fungal balls. Endoscopic surgery will be used to take out the fungal balls, check for spreading, and then wash out the sinuses.

Contact Us to Learn More

A sinus infection can be very uncomfortable, especially when it seems to never end. Talking to an experienced provider about your symptoms is the best way to be put on the right path to relief. If you’re located in Torrance or the surrounding Los Angeles area, contact the Ocean Surgery Center today to set up your initial consultation.