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New help for sinusitis patients

Vent-Os device is only the size of a grain of rice

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SAN FRANCISCO, Cali. – Andrea Leighton loves staying fit and she loves doing it outdoors! But for 15 years, symptoms of sinusitis put a damper on her active lifestyle.

"It was like my head was going to explode. The right side was super-packed, really, really painful," Leighton said.

She suffered episodes at least once a month.

"Basically stuck cold ice packs on my head for an entire day and spent the day in bed," she explained.

Until now, patients like Leighton were treated with steroids, antibiotics, or major surgery. Dr.Jerome Hester, MD, ENT of California Sinus Institute is offering his patients something new.

"It's an opportunity to treat all kinds of patients at different levels of the disease," he said.

The Vent-Os device is only the size of a grain of rice, but when it's implanted in the sinus, it uses a method known as osmosis to suck up fluids and open the blocked sinus passage. 

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"It expands the opening to the sinus to a size that we know is able to provide relief of symptoms for the long-term" Hester explained.

The capsule is inserted at the doctor's office for an hour and is then removed. Studies show 93-percent of patients still had visibly clear sinuses one year after their treatment.

Leighton hasn't had any sinus headaches since she received the treatment.

"It took an hour and a half, and I really didn't feel any pain" she said.

Now Leighton can literally "smell the roses", without worrying about her sinuses!

The Vent-Os device is FDA cleared. Patients typically need just topical anesthesia. Doctors say it's ideal for those whose symptoms are not severe enough for major surgery but do not want to suffer from the side effects of long-term antibiotic and steroid use.

Additional Information:

Sinusitis is a condition in which the nasal cavities (sinuses) become inflamed or swollen for at least eight weeks despite attempts at treatment. It may become difficult to breathe because it causes mucus to build up and not drain properly, which in turn, makes the areas around your eyes and face seem swollen or as if you have a throbbing headache. Sinusitis, also known as rhinosinusitis, can be caused by infection, nasal polyps or a deviated nasal septum. The condition can affect patients as small as children, up to middle-aged adults.
(Source: http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/chronic-sinusitis/basics/definition/con-20022039)


TREATMENT: The goals of treating sinusitis are to reduce inflammation, allow draining of the nasal passages, eliminating the underlying cause, and reduce the number of sinusitis flair-ups. If sinusitis is caused by a bacterial infection, then antibiotics can help relieve some symptoms. Decongestants and over-the-counter pain medications can also help to reduce inflammation. Nasal sprays, either saline or a nasal corticosteroid can help rinse and treat inflammation, respectively. Placing a heating pad over the inflamed area can also help. In cases that medications are not effective, surgery can remove obstructive polyps or tissue causing nasal blockage.(Source: http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/sinusitis.html)


NEW TECHNOLOGY: Using unique, osmotic self-expanding technology, the Vent-Os System provides gradual dilatation of the sinus passage, maximizing a patients tolerability in a doctor's office under local anesthesia. Jerome Hester, M.D., and Otolaryngologist at the California Sinus Institute told Ivanhoe, "Inside of the device is a little salt and other materials that allow it to pull fluid from the surrounding tissues through the membrane that surrounds the device, and through that it expands." It expands gradually from 3mm to a final diameter of 5mm in 60 minutes, at a pressure of 2.9 atmospheres (42 psi), resulting in a dilated sinus. Compared to sinus surgery, this method is slower and more gentle, but it still has enough strength to create the micro-fractures necessary to re-shape the sinus and keep it open over time.
(Source: http://sinusys.com)