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FESS, or functional endoscopic sinus surgery, is a surgical procedure used to treat chronic sinusitis, a condition characterized by inflammation of the sinus lining that lasts for at least 12 weeks. The goal of FESS is to open up the sinus passages, allowing for better drainage and improved airflow.

How it is performed

Functional endoscopic sinus surgery (FESS) is a minimally invasive surgical treatment which uses nasal endoscopes with a camera attached (thin flexible tube) inserted through the nostril to provide a view of the sinus passages. Specialized tools are used to remove any obstructions or blockages, such as inflamed tissue, polyps, or bone, that may be contributing to chronic sinusitis.

Why is the surgery done

FESS may be recommended when other treatments for chronic sinusitis, such as medications, nasal sprays, or allergy shots, have not provided sufficient relief. It is generally considered a safe and effective option for people with chronic sinusitis who have not responded to other treatments.

  • Nasal congestion and drainage: You may experience nasal congestion and drainage for a few days after the surgery. This is normal and can be managed with saline nasal spray or irrigation.
  • Pain and discomfort: You may experience some pain and discomfort in the days following the procedure. Your doctor may prescribe pain medication to manage any discomfort.
  • Bleeding: It is common to experience some bleeding from the nose for a few days after the procedure. Your doctor will provide instructions on how to manage any bleeding.
  • Follow-up appointments: You will need to schedule a follow-up appointment with your doctor to monitor your progress and ensure that your sinuses are healing properly.
  • Activity restrictions: Your doctor may recommend that you avoid certain activities, such as blowing your nose, strenuous exercise, or swimming, for a few days after the procedure.
  • Improvement in symptoms: Many people experience an improvement in their symptoms, such as reduced congestion and better breathing, within a few days of the procedure. However, it may take several weeks to fully recover and see the full benefits of the procedure.

Risks associated with the surgery

As with any surgical procedure, FESS does carry some risks. Here are some of the potential risks and complications associated with FESS:

  • Bleeding
  • Infection
  • Allergic reactions to Anesthesia
  • Rare Vision or eye complications
  • Perforation of the nasal septum
  • Recurrence of sinusitis
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