How to Prepare for Sinus Surgery
Sinus surgery can be a godsend. In the right hands, a simple procedure can relieve pressure, remove blockages, and restore your breathing to a more comfortable cycle. As the director of the Los Angeles Sinus Institute, I perform some of the nation’s most sophisticated sinuses surgery procedures, and it is immensely satisfying to watch my patients’ quality of life improve. But one area that continues to raise concerns is preparation: I am often asked some common questions about what to do, what not to do, and especially what to expect from sinus surgery.
What to Do
Relax! Sinus surgery is usually fast and easy, and there is no need to lie awake every night ruminating with anxiety. If you have made it to the evening before your procedure, chances are your sinus surgeon has already reviewed every step of the procedure with you. Get some sleep, warn your employers, and call upon friends if you anticipate the need for some extra assistance during the post-operative healing process.
What NOT to Do
Most surgeries come with the same list of things to avoid. These include eating any time after midnight the night before your procedure, drinking alcohol, and taking certain drugs and medications that could interfere with your anesthesia. For sinus surgery, it is especially important to avoid any medications that might “thin the blood,” including ibuprofen and herbal medications such as ginkgo or ginseng. Lastly it is essential to avoid smoking for several weeks before your procedure, and for up to a month afterward.
What to Expect
Sinus surgery can vary widely in its expected length of recovery. Depending upon the procedure, you may experience a few days of nasal congestion or up to a few weeks of mild drainage and healing. Either way, your expert sinus surgeon should explain precisely how your recovery will go and when you can expect to return to your normal life. Follow-up medications and antibiotics are typically be prescribed to aid in the healing process.
Good preparation is the simplest way to ensure a smooth sinus procedure. The good news is that once you have completed the procedure, you can reap the benefits of your sinus surgery for a lifetime to follow.