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Old 05-30-2006, 08:18 AM   #1
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Surgery on upper airway, still experience congestion in nose and mouth

I have been a member of these boards for a few years now. I have had a mysterious "breathing probem" for many years too! I am going to be a sophomore in college and am 19, and I have had this breathing problem since the 7th grade since I was about 13 or 14. I was advised on this board (I don't know if it was the greatest advice in hindsight) to get my tonsils taken out to eliminate that, as they were rather large. That is..were..because I finally had them taken out on May 3rd. It's going on 4 weeks since I had my surgery. In addition to my tonsils, I also had my deviated septum corrected, adenoids removed, a somnoplasty, (shrinkage of the back of the tongue) and my turbinates removed.


I have been keeping a health log, and I will tell you all of the symptoms I encountered before surgery and after.

-Nasal congestion, with a nasal cycle. Sometimes the left nostril is more congested, sometimes the right nostril is more congested. I experienced this before the surgery, and still do.

-Congestion breathing through the mouth. I have a varying degree of difficulty breathing through my mouth most of the day. It is not too often I can breathe through my mouth without any congestion or difficulty. Some days are worse than others though. Before surgery though, I could never breathe without any trouble, and I think getting the surgery helped. Still though, I'm thinking acid reflux MAY be a problem, but I am still in the dark about this one. My dad has a history of acid reflux. I do hear a rumbling in my stomach at times throughout the day and feel and hear something coming up my throat, but it is rather subtle. I am taking Prilosec, but still continue to have trouble breathing through my mouth since I started taking it. Just as I was typing this, I felt a rumbling in my stomach, hicoughed, and then felt that feeling in my throat, like something was coming up my throat (but subtle). I also experience chest pains, but only on occassion. Perhaps it could be more of an internal problem? I feel like I can't get enough air in when breathing through my mouth!

-I have had a problem with mucous in my throat before the surgery for several years , and actually made a makeshift garbabe can for my room (grocery bag) to spit out the mucous. I still experience that, but now instead of mucous being a problem most of the time, nasal drip is now a problem as well, and I never experienced this before. It seems like if it's not the mucous in the back of the throat I can feel and have to spit out, it is the nasal drip. There are some times throughout the day I feel neither, but I feel one or the other most of the day. I must mention that my dad is lactose intolerant, and this may be causing some of that mucous and nasal drip. I cut dairy out of my diet for a few days, and didn't really notice a difference. I will try doing that again though.

-I also am sneezing a LOT more than I was in the past and my nose actually feels rather irritated throughout the day. Sometimes, it is really bad. I never felt this before the surgery.

I am thinking that my breathing problem may be the result of one factor, but perhaps more than one factor, which makes it harder to diagnose.

My brother has a history of allergies. I have been tested for allergies, but only the basic allergies and nothing came up. From reading on this board, I may be allergic to something that is subtle and not tested for often (non-allergic). Whenever I have been asked "Do you have allergies" by a doctor or ENT, I have always told them "No." I think I should at the very least, make another appointment with a doctor to get this checked out.

My whole breathing seemed to start with a severe nosebleed in 7th grade (it would not stop for a good 20-25 minutes and had me very worried and the bleeding was profuse). I am fairly certain it was from getting hit in the face with a basketball which caused my septum to deviate. However, I can not say with absolute certainty. Maybe I just have trained my mind to think that way because I have never received any solid answers for why I experience my breathing problem and the possibility of a "deviated septum" made some sense. Can a deviated septum have any kind of ripple effect and cause other problems than just a nasal stuffiness?

I know this is long, but I have had this problem for a LONG time, and I don't know what to do, because I just don't trust doctors or feel like they care and feel like it's a waste of time. I know I will never get it solved if I don't go to a doctor, but I could sure use some stories of encouragement or similar encounters, because I am starting to feel hopeless about this. I really am. I feel like the big person upstairs has turned his/her back on me or that there is no back to turn.

With kind regards,

David J.

Last edited by DJBucs2005; 05-30-2006 at 08:57 AM.

 
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Old 05-30-2006, 08:25 PM   #2
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Re: Surgery on upper airway, still experience congestion in nose and mouth

Am I simply providing too much info, too little info?

 
Old 05-30-2006, 09:04 PM   #3
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Re: Surgery on upper airway, still experience congestion in nose and mouth

When did your nasal congestion start, in 7th grade? And you had it ever since? Or you were able to breathe clearly through your nose at one point but possibly injured your nose through playing sports or otherwise.

If you had nasal drip and congestion for this long now, your throat is so messed up it probably is hard to breathe. Acid reflux could cause it too, like my g/f doc told me today. I was told to go get a swallow test and have x-rays taken of throat area. Also told to see a gastroenterologist to get an endoscopy. I'm lactose intolerant and have stomach problems, so my difficulty breathing could be from acid reflux and not just stuffy nose and nasal drip.

 
Old 05-31-2006, 09:14 AM   #4
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Re: Surgery on upper airway, still experience congestion in nose and mouth

Quote:
Originally Posted by hp8
When did your nasal congestion start, in 7th grade? And you had it ever since? Or you were able to breathe clearly through your nose at one point but possibly injured your nose through playing sports or otherwise.

Yes, it started in 7th grade with my severe nose bleed and have had it ever since. I quite honestly didn't really pay a great deal attention to whether or not I had a nasal cycle back then, although, it do remember noticing the congestion being worse in one nostril at one point and then in the other nostril at another point. One of my faults that I will just have to learn to deal with in life, is the fact that I have a difficulty remembering something (over a long-term period) if I don't write it down. This is why I have started keeping a health log.

Quote:
Originally Posted by hp8
If you had nasal drip and congestion for this long now, your throat is so messed up it probably is hard to breathe. Acid reflux could cause it too, like my g/f doc told me today. I was told to go get a swallow test and have x-rays taken of throat area. Also told to see a gastroenterologist to get an endoscopy. I'm lactose intolerant and have stomach problems, so my difficulty breathing could be from acid reflux and not just stuffy nose and nasal drip.
How would the nasal drip and congestion contribute to my breathing through my mouth?

Can you please tell me what exactly a swallow test consists of and what particular problems they are looking for. What could x-rays reveal of my throat? What could an endoscopy reveal?

Can you please tell me a bit more about what exactly your condition is and the symptoms you encounter? Don't worry about providing too much info. We are all here to share our experiences and hopefully learn from each other.

As always-With kind regards,

David J.

 
Old 05-31-2006, 09:28 PM   #5
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Re: Surgery on upper airway, still experience congestion in nose and mouth

I wish I knew what my problem is, then I would know what I need to do to try and treat it. I've been to 2 other doctors aside from my family doc. 2 of them said allergies. My allergist couldn't find any allergy problems. 1 doc sent me for sinus x-rays, came back clear, said didn't know what else he could do for me except send me back to doc #1.

My throat feels swollen all the time. Sometimes hard to breathe. Chest is tight. Constant lump in throat. Also feels like throat muscles sometimes constricting. I'm thinking all this started with my sinus congestion but could be from acid reflux? This is my 4th month now on steroid nasal sprays which I find helps maybe minimally.

A barium swallow is a radiographic (x-ray) examination of the upper gastrointestinal (GI) tract, specifically the pharynx (back of mouth and throat) and the esophagus (hollow tube of muscle extending from below the tongue to the stomach). The pharynx and esophagus are made visible on x-ray film by a liquid suspension called barium.
Barium is a dry, white, chalky, metallic powder that is mixed with water to make a thick, milkshake-like drink. Barium is an x-ray absorber and appears white on x-ray film. When swallowed, a barium drink coats the inside walls of the pharynx and esophagus so that the swallowing motion, inside wall lining, and size and shape of these organs is visible on x-ray. This process shows differences that might not be seen on standard x-rays.
A barium swallow may be performed to diagnose structural or functional abnormalities of the pharynx and esophagus. These abnormalities may include, but are not limited to, the following:
cancers of the head, neck, pharynx, and esophagus
tumors
hiatal hernia - upward movement of the stomach, either into or alongside the esophagus
structural problems, such as diverticula, strictures, or polyps (growths)
esophageal varices (enlarged veins)
muscle disorders (pharyngeal or esophageal), such as dysphagia (difficulty swallowing) or spasms (pharyngeal or esophageal)
achalasia - the lower esophageal sphincter muscle does not relax and allow food to pass into the stomach
gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) and ulcers.

I also had an endoscopy done over year ago, a probe with camera which they put down your throat all the way into your stomach to look for any abnormalities.

I get to see my ent again in couple weeks. See if I can get him to order a CT scan. I was also thinking of balloon sinuplasty to help relieve this nasal stuffiness, although my family doc said I should just try nasal irrigation first. But I think some water can get in your ears and give you that blocked feeling, which absolutely drives me crazy.

 
Old 06-11-2006, 12:07 PM   #6
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Re: Surgery on upper airway, still experience congestion in nose and mouth

Quote:
Originally Posted by hp8
I wish I knew what my problem is, then I would know what I need to do to try and treat it. I've been to 2 other doctors aside from my family doc. 2 of them said allergies. My allergist couldn't find any allergy problems. 1 doc sent me for sinus x-rays, came back clear, said didn't know what else he could do for me except send me back to doc #1.

My throat feels swollen all the time. Sometimes hard to breathe. Chest is tight. Constant lump in throat. Also feels like throat muscles sometimes constricting. I'm thinking all this started with my sinus congestion but could be from acid reflux? This is my 4th month now on steroid nasal sprays which I find helps maybe minimally.
It could be. My dad says he has acid reflux. He was tested for it a long time ago, and nothing came up. He has controleld his diet by not drinking any pop or acidic drinks or eating late at night, and has also controlled the symptoms he believes are from acid reflux.

Quote:
Originally Posted by hp8
A barium swallow is a radiographic (x-ray) examination of the upper gastrointestinal (GI) tract, specifically the pharynx (back of mouth and throat) and the esophagus (hollow tube of muscle extending from below the tongue to the stomach). The pharynx and esophagus are made visible on x-ray film by a liquid suspension called barium.
Barium is a dry, white, chalky, metallic powder that is mixed with water to make a thick, milkshake-like drink. Barium is an x-ray absorber and appears white on x-ray film. When swallowed, a barium drink coats the inside walls of the pharynx and esophagus so that the swallowing motion, inside wall lining, and size and shape of these organs is visible on x-ray. This process shows differences that might not be seen on standard x-rays.
A barium swallow may be performed to diagnose structural or functional abnormalities of the pharynx and esophagus. These abnormalities may include, but are not limited to, the following:
cancers of the head, neck, pharynx, and esophagus
tumors
hiatal hernia - upward movement of the stomach, either into or alongside the esophagus
structural problems, such as diverticula, strictures, or polyps (growths)
esophageal varices (enlarged veins)
muscle disorders (pharyngeal or esophageal), such as dysphagia (difficulty swallowing) or spasms (pharyngeal or esophageal)
achalasia - the lower esophageal sphincter muscle does not relax and allow food to pass into the stomach
gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) and ulcers.

I also had an endoscopy done over year ago, a probe with camera which they put down your throat all the way into your stomach to look for any abnormalities.

I get to see my ent again in couple weeks. See if I can get him to order a CT scan. I was also thinking of balloon sinuplasty to help relieve this nasal stuffiness, although my family doc said I should just try nasal irrigation first. But I think some water can get in your ears and give you that blocked feeling, which absolutely drives me crazy.
Any good news to come from you? I hope!

If not, that's ok. Everyone knows that it can be very frustrating to get a medical problem diagnosed and resolved with insurance, doctors, or just the condition itself being hard to diagnose. Still though, a good doctor who cares..you would think..would be able to diagnose a medical problem.

That sure is a lot of problems though, but one test could hopefully reveal a lot. I may have to ask about that. How reliable of a test is the barium swallow?

My condition has not gotten any better. I still experience congestion through my nose and through my mouth. I may have messed up my lungs by mouth breathing all these years, but I always did experience problems breathing through my mouth the same time I experienced trouble through my nose, so I have sort of dismissed that possibility, but not totally.

 
Old 11-06-2006, 07:15 PM   #7
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Re: Surgery on upper airway, still experience congestion in nose and mouth

I'm going to try bumping this up. I would love to be on a constant mission to figure out this breathing problem, but I find that when I do--it emotionally drains me. I will stay up at night thinking about it, wondering if I'll ever find the answers. If I do..will it be too late? Will there be some kind of permanent damage done? Heck, at this point though, I'd take anything better than this. I used to enjoy exercising, now it's a drudge. When I get to a certain point..that point where I'd be able to push myself and keep going even though I would be panting...but now it's a different story. I want to....but my body just will just NOT enable me to.


An update to my previous post if you are kind enough to be reading this. I had another test..an echocardiogram on my heart. Nothing showed. It is so hard to remain positive and keep pushing. The $10 co-pays and half hour plus waits for a 15-20 minute appointment don't make me any more eager to seek out answers and make an appointment with a doctor either.

I try to look at this way though: All I can do is try. If I live my life without ever getting this problem solved, can I at least look myself in the mirror and say I honestly did my part--all that I could? I don't know if I can yet..but I definitely can say I HAVE tried pretty hard. There's just not too much to show for it now.

 
Old 11-06-2006, 08:28 PM   #8
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Re: Surgery on upper airway, still experience congestion in nose and mouth

Hey,

Sorry to hear about your problems. But I swear I was born a mouth breather and have always been a mouth breather for the last 31 years. Mine is due to structurally small sinus cavities in addition to a wide and extensive group of allergies to pollens, food, bugs, dust, and pollution... yeah!

To the point:
I was going to recommend that you go to a good Gastrointestinal MD. Some of your symptoms matched my husbands GURD/hiadal hernia problem to a T, which is managed with 2x day nexium and an out patient surgery involving an instrument fondly labeled... Big Bertha.

Another thought is if you do not have "allergies" have you been tested for vasomotor rhinitus. This is an aggressive allergic response to pollutions and irritants... basically all the stuff hard to test for... my mouth breathing gets worse when in polluted areas. I have vasomotor rhinitus as well as allergic rhinitus... and chronic sinusitus. I am hoping things will improve, becasue I just had my adnoids, and tonsils removed as well as my sinus cavities roto-rootered. I have been able to breathe out of my nose since day one after my surgery 22 days ago. I do catch myself returning to mouth breathing, but I think it is more due to habit right now than restricted air flow.

FInd a good allergy-immunologist. Get the full battery of tests, not just the 32 point scratch test on the back and upper arm. Get the injection testing. There is confirmed documentation that some subjects do not react to the skin tests, but react violently to the injection testing. The skin test does have a margin of error to it, though normally there is at least a minimal skin irritation as a result of the scratch tests. They can also take your blood and evaluate that extensively, telling you exactly what you are allergic too. The problem with the blood test evaluation is that it is extremely expensive and the insurance companies normally do not cover it.

You are correct you need to look for a good doctor that believes you and is willing to go to bat for you. It has taken a many years for me to find a group of doctors willing to find and fix the source of the problem versus treat the system.

My sister-in-law is a MD, she says frequently that the art of medicine is just that an art form. Some doctors are better than others, caring...staying current with techniques and information. Fundamentally it breaks down to the simple fact that medicine is completely experimental and one has to go by a grouping of symptoms, depending on the symptoms and the MD evaluating the symptoms different diagnosis can result. I wish you the best and hope that you find some relief soon.

Respectfully Yours,
MG

Last edited by mkgbrook; 11-06-2006 at 08:44 PM.

 
Old 11-07-2006, 09:08 PM   #9
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Re: Surgery on upper airway, still experience congestion in nose and mouth

Quote:
Originally Posted by mkgbrook
Hey,

Sorry to hear about your problems. But I swear I was born a mouth breather and have always been a mouth breather for the last 31 years. Mine is due to structurally small sinus cavities in addition to a wide and extensive group of allergies to pollens, food, bugs, dust, and pollution... yeah!
Were your small sinus cavities from birth or early in childhood or did it occur later on in life?

Quote:
Originally Posted by mkgbrook

To the point:
I was going to recommend that you go to a good Gastrointestinal MD. Some of your symptoms matched my husbands GURD/hiadal hernia problem to a T, which is managed with 2x day nexium and an out patient surgery involving an instrument fondly labeled... Big Bertha.
I have tried some acid reflux medicine. I don't know if I already mentioned it, but I do sometimes hear a faint gurgling sound coming from my throat. Not everyday though. I would hav to say this is not very likely, but I can't totally rule it out. The medicine did not help my breathing though.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mkgbrook
Another thought is if you do not have "allergies" have you been tested for vasomotor rhinitus. This is an aggressive allergic response to pollutions and irritants... basically all the stuff hard to test for... my mouth breathing gets worse when in polluted areas. I have vasomotor rhinitus as well as allergic rhinitus... and chronic sinusitus. I am hoping things will improve, becasue I just had my adnoids, and tonsils removed as well as my sinus cavities roto-rootered. I have been able to breathe out of my nose since day one after my surgery 22 days ago. I do catch myself returning to mouth breathing, but I think it is more due to habit right now than restricted air flow.

I still have quite a bit of reading to do. Part of my problem, is that I get slightly intimidated or maybe more so overwhelmed by all of the terms that are thrown at me in texts I read. That combined with the fact that my retention of knowledge is best when I take notes and it can make for a bit of work. One thing that I have not been able to find concrete evidence on is whether or not a deviated septum can lead to other problems, such as *AHEM*, a breathing problem. I know a deviated setpum itself can cause nasal congestion, but will it sort of have a trickle effect, say sinusitis? Some info leads to PERHAPS, but not for sure. I have read that sinsusitis may develop as a result of nasal allergies OR other conditions that block the nasal passages. That is all. I guess this is a question for a doctor.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mkgbrook
FInd a good allergy-immunologist. Get the full battery of tests, not just the 32 point scratch test on the back and upper arm. Get the injection testing. There is confirmed documentation that some subjects do not react to the skin tests, but react violently to the injection testing. The skin test does have a margin of error to it, though normally there is at least a minimal skin irritation as a result of the scratch tests. They can also take your blood and evaluate that extensively, telling you exactly what you are allergic too. The problem with the blood test evaluation is that it is extremely expensive and the insurance companies normally do not cover it.
That is the hard part. Finding a good doctor period. My insurance quite honestly is not great. I just have to make do with what I have though. Are there any variations of "injection testing"? Is that a specific procedure or is it a general term that has variations? I think injections would be most likely to receive. Blood tests perhaps--if only they knew how long I've had this problem (since age 13 and I'm turning 20 in November)

Quote:
Originally Posted by mkgbrook
You are correct you need to look for a good doctor that believes you and is willing to go to bat for you. It has taken a many years for me to find a group of doctors willing to find and fix the source of the problem versus treat the system.

My sister-in-law is a MD, she says frequently that the art of medicine is just that an art form. Some doctors are better than others, caring...staying current with techniques and information. Fundamentally it breaks down to the simple fact that medicine is completely experimental and one has to go by a grouping of symptoms, depending on the symptoms and the MD evaluating the symptoms different diagnosis can result. I wish you the best and hope that you find some relief soon.

Respectfully Yours,
MG
I definitely have learned that. Time after time, hopes were destroyed after being prescribed some medication I knew darn well was not going to help me the least bit.

Thanks for your advice!

 
Old 11-08-2006, 06:22 AM   #10
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Re: Surgery on upper airway, still experience congestion in nose and mouth

"Were your small sinus cavities from birth or early in childhood or did it occur later on in life?"

I believe from birth. My mother and brother had the same issues... that is right, its my mom's fault... and now my son has an almost identical sinus structure to mine, when we compare CT's and MRI's. So I will be the cause of any future problems he has...

"One thing that I have not been able to find concrete evidence on is whether or not a deviated septum can lead to other problems, such as *AHEM*, a breathing problem. I know a deviated setpum itself can cause nasal congestion, but will it sort of have a trickle effect, say sinusitis? Some info leads to PERHAPS, but not for sure. I have read that sinsusitis may develop as a result of nasal allergies OR other conditions that block the nasal passages. That is all. I guess this is a question for a doctor."

Ah! You want hard facts, you are not go to get them. The art of medicine is based on statistical averages and probabilities... thus you will never get 100%. However you might get... if we correct your deviated septum, and perform endoscopic surgery there is an 80% chance of fixing if not improving your problem... I break my line at 50-60% chance of improvement, if the side effects and complications are no that severe.

"That is the hard part. Finding a good doctor period. My insurance quite honestly is not great. I just have to make do with what I have though. Are there any variations of "injection testing"? Is that a specific procedure or is it a general term that has variations? I think injections would be most likely to receive. Blood tests perhaps--if only they knew how long I've had this problem (since age 13 and I'm turning 20 in November)"


Injection testing is where the allergist fills many.. many small syringes with various common allergins to your area. Then they inject them in you upper arms and (if necessary) thighs. This allows the allergins to directly enter the blood stream, promoting a quicker and more aggresive response.

Best of luck to you,
MG

 
Old 11-08-2006, 09:29 AM   #11
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Re: Surgery on upper airway, still experience congestion in nose and mouth

Quote:
Originally Posted by mkgbrook
"Were your small sinus cavities from birth or early in childhood or did it occur later on in life?"

I believe from birth. My mother and brother had the same issues... that is right, its my mom's fault... and now my son has an almost identical sinus structure to mine, when we compare CT's and MRI's. So I will be the cause of any future problems he has...

"One thing that I have not been able to find concrete evidence on is whether or not a deviated septum can lead to other problems, such as *AHEM*, a breathing problem. I know a deviated setpum itself can cause nasal congestion, but will it sort of have a trickle effect, say sinusitis? Some info leads to PERHAPS, but not for sure. I have read that sinsusitis may develop as a result of nasal allergies OR other conditions that block the nasal passages. That is all. I guess this is a question for a doctor."

Ah! You want hard facts, you are not go to get them. The art of medicine is based on statistical averages and probabilities... thus you will never get 100%. However you might get... if we correct your deviated septum, and perform endoscopic surgery there is an 80% chance of fixing if not improving your problem... I break my line at 50-60% chance of improvement, if the side effects and complications are no that severe.

"That is the hard part. Finding a good doctor period. My insurance quite honestly is not great. I just have to make do with what I have though. Are there any variations of "injection testing"? Is that a specific procedure or is it a general term that has variations? I think injections would be most likely to receive. Blood tests perhaps--if only they knew how long I've had this problem (since age 13 and I'm turning 20 in November)"


Injection testing is where the allergist fills many.. many small syringes with various common allergins to your area. Then they inject them in you upper arms and (if necessary) thighs. This allows the allergins to directly enter the blood stream, promoting a quicker and more aggresive response.

Best of luck to you,
MG
You seem to be active on these boards and are trying to be of help. I appreciate that. I sort of lost you on this post though. It didn't quite make sense grammatically in some areas. I did find some information that says a deviated septum can cause sinusitis. I am not surprised at all. I need to delve in deeper into possible causes of this problem. Sinusitis or something similar seems to be the cause.

Symptoms of sinusitis

Facial pain or pressure---mild pressure a few times a week
Thick, discolored mucus--oftentimes have mucous in the back of my throat, but it is clear. I have the yellow mucus from my nose a few times a year
Diminished sense of smell --yes
Cough (worse when laying down)---yes, but not all the time
Headache ---sometimes
Bad breath --yes---worse than I remember it being on average
Fever --sometimes
Toothache --sometimes
Pressure in the ears --yes, very often--I am oftentimes plugging up my nose then trying to blow air out my nose (which in case goes out my ears to unplug them)
Fatigue--yes

Last edited by DJBucs2005; 11-08-2006 at 09:37 AM.

 
Old 11-08-2006, 11:30 AM   #12
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Re: Surgery on upper airway, still experience congestion in nose and mouth

Sorry about the grammer. I was preparing for a Ph.D level Principles of Combustion exam, and rushed my reply. Normally, I try to read over my replies and catch bad grammer/spelling. I check in multiple times a day to break up the tediousness of sitting at a desk programming and reviewing notes.

The previous post in summary:
My small sinus structure is a genetic trait, passed down from my mother to my brother and me. I have in turn passed it on to my own son. However, I am trying to be a little more aggressive in treating it than my parents. My parents were against surgery for there children. As a result my brother and I had to get out on our own to finally take care of the problem, i.e., sinus surgery, T&A's, allergy testing and shots, etc. My son now four years old has had both his adnoids and tonsils out, and now has a decreased sinus/ear infection rate of 80% as well as a full restoration of hearing loss due to retained ear fluid. His recovery after surgery was MILD in comparison to my brother's and my own.

As far as the deviated septum goes. Yes, it can restrict the air flow through your nose as well as the ability for your sinuses to drain. (In house M.D. (not ENT, but top of her class) supports this depending on the severity of deviation in the septum) This restriction can result in an increase in sinus infections, ear infections, and sinusitus complications (headaches resulting from weather pressure shifts as well as allergy and pollution irritants).

In most cases, an ENT will not guarantee that any surgery will fix the problem completely, because there are no true guarantees. However, correcting a deviated septum should in theory improve airflow through that region of the nose. If there are other complications/factors, correcting just the deviated septum may not fix the problem completely.

Personal experiences with deviated septums:
My husband had his deviated septum fixed, sinus pollumps(sp) removed, and a bilateral turboplasty(partial removal of the membranes in the frontal and maxillary sinus cavities); but he still had fatigue and a few other complications as a result of sleep apnea. Using a CPAP at night helps control the problems resulting from his sleep apnea, but surgically there is nothing else they can/are willing to do at the moment. My sister-in-law had a deviated septum corrected, sinus windows inserted and sinus cysts removed. She now has minimal to no sinus complications and feels great morning, noon, and night.

Have you looked into sleep apnea by chance? Many of your complications may be the result of sleep apnea and an inability to achieve adequate REM sleep time. I have sleep apnea and with out my CPAP, I get no REM sleep. Before being diagnosed with sleep apnea I was chronically fatigued, unable to lose weight, woke up every hour at night, and was thoroughly miserable. Restricted airways are the main cause of sleep apnea. Your deviated septum, may be causing mild sleep apnea.

Well good luck. I am curious to hear about what you find out.

Sincerely,
MG

Last edited by mkgbrook; 11-08-2006 at 11:38 AM.

 
Old 11-08-2006, 12:14 PM   #13
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Re: Surgery on upper airway, still experience congestion in nose and mouth

Quote:
Originally Posted by mkgbrook
Sorry about the grammer. I was preparing for a Ph.D level Principles of Combustion exam, and rushed my reply. Normally, I try to read over my replies and catch bad grammer/spelling. I check in multiple times a day to break up the tediousness of sitting at a desk programming and reviewing notes.

The previous post in summary:
My small sinus structure is a genetic trait, passed down from my mother to my brother and me. I have in turn passed it on to my own son. However, I am trying to be a little more aggressive in treating it than my parents. My parents were against surgery for there children. As a result my brother and I had to get out on our own to finally take care of the problem, i.e., sinus surgery, T&A's, allergy testing and shots, etc. My son now four years old has had both his adnoids and tonsils out, and now has a decreased sinus/ear infection rate of 80% as well as a full restoration of hearing loss due to retained ear fluid. His recovery after surgery was MILD in comparison to my brother's and my own.
That's OK about the grammar. If you are in science, I can totally understand it. Not to embarrass you, but with the way people's brains work, I have found oftentimes that my chemistry teachers have not had the best grammar, for example when putting together notes. Grammar doesn't come as easy to those whose brains are more geared towards science and math than towards English or other subjects. Not to say they are illiterate. Mistakes just might not jump out at them as much. I'm sure there are those well-rounded in both subjects though--English and Science.

That is too bad. Something health related to FIX health problems (not just bolster someone) would be the only way I would be pro-genetic manipulation, but that is getting into a different topic. Good to hear about his mild recovery.


Quote:
Originally Posted by mkgbrook
As far as the deviated septum goes. Yes, it can restrict the air flow through your nose as well as the ability for your sinuses to drain. (In house M.D. (not ENT, but top of her class) supports this depending on the severity of deviation in the septum) This restriction can result in an increase in sinus infections, ear infections, and sinusitus complications (headaches resulting from weather pressure shifts as well as allergy and pollution irritants).



In most cases, an ENT will not guarantee that any surgery will fix the problem completely, because there are no true guarantees. However, correcting a deviated septum should in theory improve airflow through that region of the nose. If there are other complications/factors, correcting just the deviated septum may not fix the problem completely.
The ENT that did my surgery said he thought it would help me. I had surgery to correct my deviated septum, remove my tonsils and adenoids and resection the inferior turbinate. Someone else on this board reccomended I go back to that ENT, but I just didn't trust him after that. The airflow is basically the same. I'd say maybe just a very minute improvement. I just don't have that yellow mucus/snot from my nose anymore, but I have to keep looking into that sinusitis. It's just this little thing called school that takes up so much time--as you can relate..either teaching or a student?.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mkgbrook

Personal experiences with deviated septums:
My husband had his deviated septum fixed, sinus pollumps(sp) removed, and a bilateral turboplasty(partial removal of the membranes in the frontal and maxillary sinus cavities); but he still had fatigue and a few other complications as a result of sleep apnea. Using a CPAP at night helps control the problems resulting from his sleep apnea, but surgically there is nothing else they can/are willing to do at the moment. My sister-in-law had a deviated septum corrected, sinus windows inserted and sinus cysts removed. She now has minimal to no sinus complications and feels great morning, noon, and night.

Have you looked into sleep apnea by chance? Many of your complications may be the result of sleep apnea and an inability to achieve adequate REM sleep time. I have sleep apnea and with out my CPAP, I get no REM sleep. Before being diagnosed with sleep apnea I was chronically fatigued, unable to lose weight, woke up every hour at night, and was thoroughly miserable. Restricted airways are the main cause of sleep apnea. Your deviated septum, may be causing mild sleep apnea.

Well good luck. I am curious to hear about what you find out.

Sincerely,
MG
Is he overweight by chance? I believe quite a bit of athletes have been getting this, because of just how big they are---seriously...these guys are WAY overweight. Those big offensive linemen and defensive linemen in football.

I have thought about the possibility of sleep apnea, but that would not the be cause of the congestion. It would be an effect. I can at least try a sleep test if my insurance allows it. It mostly affects overweight people, but considering I have been told I snore when I sleep and I do have nasal congestion and some difficulty breathing through my mouth as well, I think I should look into this too. I have said it previously, that before my breathing problem, I don't remember feeling fatigued as often. It could be attributed to just needing more sleep than others. However, even when getting 8 hours of sleep or more, I still feel some fatigue. This isn't even the main issue. My fatigue is not severe, but it is present. If I get to the bottom of what the actual cause is, I can start to worry about other things. A device would not help me breathe normally throughout the rest of the day. It would only be a temporary fix while sleeping. Is it a big ordeal for a sleep test and how much does it generally cost??

With kind regards,

Dave

Last edited by DJBucs2005; 11-08-2006 at 12:43 PM.

 
Old 11-08-2006, 08:26 PM   #14
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Re: Surgery on upper airway, still experience congestion in nose and mouth

DJBucs2005,

Good school teachers should always be students, for it is important to learn from the questions of our students.

Have you checked into the allergy side of things? I am trying to figure out a source for your breathing restriction and inflammed membranes in the sinuses due to allergic reactions are another common cause of sinusitus... but you already know this.

My husband is not overweight. He just has a restricted airway. He is big on snoring and mouth breathing as well. If he doesn't sleep for 6-8 hours on his CPAP, he can sleep for 14+ hours in a day and still feel fatigued and run down. Sleep apnea is very deceptive and it wouldn't hurt for you to look into the side effects of lack of REM sleep. A good night's sleep on my CPAP gives me energy all day and I feel better in general.

Cost? Well it is not cheap. Here, it is $1500 a night with a two night required observation period. This cost is pre-insurance, after insurance it tends to be much more reasonable. The sleep MD will evaluate you and determine whether or not you need a sleep trial. This can be determined by simply answering a series of questions and allowing for a quick physical examination. There is a definite link to large neck size and sleep apnea. Men with a neck size greater than/equal to 16. 5 inches are predisposed to sleep apnea, and women 14.5 inches. My husband and I both exceed these limits.

What does a sleep trial involve? The first night you are evaluated and observed with out a CPAP and the second night with a CPAP. The observation requires the attachment of many probes to your head and chest. These probes allow for the measurement of night time brain activity, heart and respiratory function, and any abnormal sleep time habits (sleep walking, talking, eradict movements, etc).

I know that the main questions are listed on the WWW in various places. You can find one of those quick tests and see how you compare. I think it might indicate it is a possibility for you. When you see the ENT, ask about sleep apnea. They should be able to check and see if you have any physical airway restrictions.

Best of luck with your research.
MG

Last edited by mkgbrook; 11-08-2006 at 08:28 PM.

 
Old 04-09-2007, 09:54 PM   #15
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Re: Surgery on upper airway, still experience congestion in nose and mouth

Man..I turn into an insomniac when I start thinking about this problem.

I believe I have some form of sinusitis currently, which has prompted me to start exploring this ongoing problem of mine. It fits all the symptoms of a sinus infection. I have found myself with my current sickness more often since my breathing problem, which is characterized by nasal congestion and difficulty breathing through the mouth.

My current sickness is characterized by:
-Nasal congestion (worse than usual..which makes it horrible)
-Sneezing, mildly irritated nose, even a feeling of having to sneeze, but the sneeze just won't happen
-Sore throat/ mild cough
-Plugged up ears/ear pressure
-Facial pressure, on bridge of nose/in nose; under my eyes, spot above the spot in between my eyes
I am getting so very sick of this. It is so depressing and...I can't even think of the word...it's just depressing in general that I have this breathing problem and the doctors can't seem to find anything. I always feel disregarded when I go to the doctor--all they ever do is prescribe me medication or say they don't see anything wrong with me. I think the bottom line is that my medical insurance sucks and they are not going to suggest a test to just rule something out when my insurance is weak. The allergy testing I had years ago was a joke. It was some nurse putting four little allergens on my arm.

My current sickness now is something I can function with, but does impact me in a negative way as I feel more fatigued. Would going to the doctor about this (unfortunately, time is of the essence as the winter term comes to a close) have any kind of hard evidence to show possible causation, like say sinusitis is possibly caused by a root problem (breathing problem)?

Thanks for your care mkgbrook. I find myself always getting discouraged easily when I think about really investing time into this because this studying is only as effective really, as the doctors and of course my insurance. I suppose I could really push for something if I know what I'm talking about, but the bottom line always reigns supreme it seems in this world we live in.

I went in for an appointment for a sleep study, but the doctor didn't think I had any kind of problem with that.

Last edited by DJBucs2005; 04-09-2007 at 09:57 PM.

 
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