An accurate diagnosis is essential before starting treatment for ear symptoms. A single episode of a sore or blocked ear may be due to middle ear infection or fluid (similar to a child), but in adults the list of possible causes is much longer. Mr Triolo uses high definition video otoscopy and tympanometry (a quick, simple test of middle ear pressure) to facilitate an informed discussion about the cause for your ear symptoms and treatment options.
Blocked nose. The ability to breathe clearly through the nose is essential to our well-being. It helps to filter and humidify air before it reaches our lungs and assists in maintaining the health of our oral cavity. Common causes of a blocked nose in adults include a deviated septum or enlarged turbinates. If over the counter nasal steroid sprays have been ineffective, relatively simple surgical options such as Septoplasty and Turbinoplasty can provide long term relief from symptoms.
Chronic Sinusitis. Chronic sinusitis can cause symptoms such as nasal discharge (thick mucous from the nose or down the back of the throat), nasal obstruction, reduced sense of smell and occasionally, facial pain or pressure. Symptoms may have been present for years or may start for the first time after a particularly nasty ‘head cold’. Over the counter nasal steroid sprays, nasal saline rinses and antibiotics are appropriate first-line treatments, but for persistent symptoms a CT scan and referral to an ENT specialist for nasal endoscopy is recommended. Endoscopic sinus surgery (FESS) is a safe and effective treatment for chronic sinusitis.
Recurrent Tonsillitis. Recurrent tonsillitis is usually due to infection with a particular bacteria (Streptococcus), that can persist despite treatment with antibiotics because it can lay dormant within recesses in the tonsil and then reactivate when a person is run down. Tonsillectomy provides permanent relief from symptoms and using advanced surgical instruments can make the recovery period more comfortable.
Snoring and Obstructive Sleep Apnea
Light, occasional snoring can be normal in adults. But heavy snoring that occurs every night and is associated the propensity to fall asleep in the afternoon when given half a chance, can be a sign of obstructive sleep apnea. Other symptoms include witnessed episodes of a complete absence of breathing during sleep and headaches that are present from the moment of waking in the morning.
Obstructive sleep apnea can affect people of any age, gender and build. Successful treatment requires a detailed understanding of the anatomy of the throat. Sleep endoscopy, where a patient is given medication to fall asleep and then a flexible camera is inserted through the nose, can identify the anatomical site of obstruction when it was not apparent during office examination.
Continuous positive airways pressure (CPAP) is the recognized first line treatment, however a significant proportion of patients cannot tolerate wearing a mask over their face while they sleep and will elect to have surgical treatment. Traditional surgical treatments that focused on the nasal airway and soft palate (‘UPPP’) were ineffective for many patients. Current surgical techniques that are able to relieve obstruction at the base of tongue have greatly improved success rates.