Functional Endoscopic Sinus Surgery (FESS)
Obstruction of the natural openings of the sinuses, or ostia, result in chronic sinusitus. The aim of FESS is to open these ostia, and restore the normal function of the sinuses. FESS is also used to clear polyps.
The surgery is done under general anaesthetic. No incisions are made on the face. The entire procedure is done using special cameras called endoscopes.
FESS is generally safe. However, because of the proximity of the nose to other important structures, complications include injury to the eye or base of the skull. A base of skull injury can result in leakage of the fluid around the brain (CSF), and meningitis. A second surgery may then be required to seal the leak. These complications, however, are rare.
Prior to surgery, a CT scan is required. This serves as a “roadmap” to the surgery, and details the anatomy and variations thereof. Dr Atiya DOES NOT DO FESS without a CT. If your medical aid will not pay for the scan, this will have to be sorted out BEFORE surgery.
A septoplasty is usually done for a deviated nasal septum. It is done under general anaesthesia, as a day procedure. You may have packs in your nose post-operatively.
Septoplasty is safe, but carries the same risks as FESS, albeit less common. In addition, septal perforation is also a complication, but is rare.