Functional Endoscopic Sinus surgery (FESS) is a surgical technique used to help open the sinus drainage pathways and remove mucus from the sinuses, which helps to eliminate or decrease the number of infections in the future. Because this technique opens the natural sinus openings, FESS has been shown to produce better results than procedures used in the past.
Before endoscopic sinus surgery, a computed tomography (CAT) scan will be performed to see how the sinuses are.. It is important to have the CAT scan taken while the patient is on antibiotics so that we can see how effective the medicine has been in clearing up the sinus infection.
These pictures can be used to show the amount of infection in the sinuses, as well as help your surgeon know exactly what kind of surgery the patient will need.
The surgery is performed using small telescopes which are placed through the nose allowing the surgeon to open the natural drainage pathways of sinuses under direct vision. This allows for drainage of mucus from the sinuses and helps prevent future infections.
FESS is performed under general anesthesia. This procedure does require an overnight stay in the hospital, and the length of surgery depends on the amount of disease and blockage in the sinuses. However, surgery usually does not last more than 2 hour.
About 2-3 weeks after surgery, patient may be scheduled to return to the OPD for another examination under local anesthesia. This will allow the doctor to clean out any crusting and evaluate the area where the surgery was performed to make sure it is healing properly.
Post op care
Drainage from the nose may be seen for 3 to 4 days after surgery and could last up to a week. This drainage may initially have some bright red blood and progress to brownish streaked mucus.
To help soak up this drainage, a moustache type dressing may be used. The
first day after surgery you may have to change the dressing several times.
Please keep the patient from blowing the nose for two weeks after surgery to avoid irritating the area. Also, try to have patient sneeze with the mouth open, this may be more comfortable.
Crusting in and below the nostrils may be noted due to drainage from the
nose after surgery. Washing the outside of the nose with warm soapy water should help remove the crusting.