Balloon Procedure Clears Sinus Infections

Breathe easier after minimally invasive dilation procedure.

In the 25 years that it’s been developing young athletes, the Essence Girls Basketball program has produced more than 250 Division I college players, more than 40 professionals and four Olympic gold medalists.

Kimberly Davis Powell

But those are just some of its achievements.

“Some of the girls we’ve coached have gone on to become doctors,” says Essence founder Kimberly Davis Powell. “One became a judge; another is a successful music writer. Our girls have used their educations to further themselves in many ways.”

The nonprofit travel basketball program was designed to help girls earn college scholarships and succeed in life, not just in athletics. Kimberly founded the program while she was in college, where opposing basketball players weren’t her only foe.

“While in college, I realized I had serious allergy and sinus issues,” Kimberly reveals. “Ever since then, I’ve suffered from sinus infections. Bad sinus infections. The worst was last year when I got like four in a six-month period. I was just miserable.”

Her doctor addressed the issue by making a change in her allergy medication. When that failed to provide relief, Kimberly’s doctor sent her to see Devang M. Shah, MD, at Atlantic Ear, Nose & Throat.

After a thorough examination, Dr. Shah recommended a balloon sinus dilation, a minimally invasive procedure that gently opens the sinuses and carries far less risk than traditional sinus surgery because it is performed using a local anesthetic.

“We start by giving the patient a Valium and some pain medication to relax them a bit,’’ Dr. Shah educates. “Then we administer the local anesthetic. Once that has taken effect, we find the opening of the sinuses and gently insert the deflated balloon.

“There’s a bone that surrounds the opening of the sinus, and once the balloon is in the right spot, we slowly inflate it with water. As the balloon is inflated, it gently shifts that bone over and enlarges the opening.

“Once that’s done, we remove the balloon. Shifting that bone is what keeps the sinus open because you’re literally changing the shape of the opening, so the procedure works very well.

“Another advantage of this procedure is that there’s hardly any bleeding involved, and there’s no bruising or packing of the nose afterward. Patients usually go back to their normal activities the next day.”

Prior to undergoing the balloon sinus dilation last fall, Kimberly often felt fatigued because her sinus infections made it hard for her to sleep and breathe. Those issues are a thing of the past.

“Ever since the procedure, I feel so much better,” Kimberly enthuses. “I can breathe easier, and I don’t feel sick anymore. I’m really excited about what Dr. Shah has done for me, and I know if I ever have to go through this again, I’m going to see Dr. Shah.”

© FHCN article by Roy Cummings. Photo by Jordan Pysz. mkb
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    • Atlantic Ear, Nose and Throat, P.A.

      Atlantic Ear, Nose & Throat is a comprehensive, full-service otolaryngology practice with offices in both Seminole and Volusia counties. In the practice, Devang Shah, MD, and Daniel Rothbaum, MD, combine surgical excellence with a compassion... Read More

    • Devang Shah, MD

      Devang M. Shah, MD, is board-certified in otolaryngology. Dr. Shah attended MIT as an undergraduate. After receiving his medical degree with honors, he completed his surgical internship and residency at Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore. Dr.... Read More