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  • Post-surgery, still experiencing nasal congest., & difficulty breathing through mouth

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    Old 05-31-2006, 09:34 AM   #1
    DJBucs2005
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    Post-surgery, still experiencing nasal congest., & difficulty breathing through 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, so please be understanding with the wealth of detail I provide (hopefully in benefit of myself and others).

    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 the possibility of that as they were rather large. That is..were..because I finally had them taken out on May 3rd. It has been four weeks since I had my surgery on the day of this post. 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 corrected (I should have been more questioning with this but quite honestly just wanted to get surgery because I was so darn desperate, I don't quite know what they did to my turbinates but assumed it could only be good).


    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. It makes it difficult to breathe through my nose.

    -Difficulty 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 mucus 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. ALSO ADDED RECENTLY: I must also note my nostrils itch throughout the day and I unfortunately have to sort of get in there with my thumb and scratch it (so it kind of looks like I'm doing something else if you know what I mean ). Some days are worse than others.

    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) which is why I have re-posted in here. 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. When I finally make another appt. with a doctor, I want to be more informed and be more confident in my demands instead of allowing them to blow me off like I'm nothing. 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.

    P.S.-Should I go back to the ENT who performed the surgery I mentioned above, or seek an opinion from another general doctor? My health insurance (I really wish I could change the insurance I have) demands I get a referral from a PCP(personal care physician) or "general doctor"--I am using them interchangably, but they are the same, and they can only refer me to certain specialists-I think. I doubt I could get a referral to see a top notch ENT, but I would have to double check on this. (edited: Nope, only within the current "network" I am in, which at any given time, is not going to be "top notch" in regards to what "network" I'd LIKE to be in.

    I don't trust my current PCP who gave me the referral to the ENT I went to and he doesn't really seem to care about me all that much. I'll still be talking to him, and he'll be like motioning for me to lay down on my back and then start feeling my stomach-spend about 1 to 2 minutes with me, then go off to another patient, make me wait 5 minutes and then come back for another 2 minutes. I do more waiting in the dang room than I do receiving care from the doctor. The only reason I went to that PCP was to get a referral to that ENT (someone recommended him). I did tell the ENT I don't have allergies, but then again "no allergies" is such a broad statement, but you would think he'd be a bit more questioning if he really cared about me, such as asking "Well, what have you been tested for?" The real kicker though is this- When I choose a new PCP, I must wait until the first of the next month to make an appt. with that doctor (and still have the insurance cover the visit).

    With kind regards,

    David J.

    Last edited by DJBucs2005; 06-07-2006 at 04:31 PM.

     
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    Old 05-31-2006, 05:47 PM   #2
    sneezydiva
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    Re: Post-surgery, still experiencing nasal congest., & difficulty breathing through mouth

    I suspect you do have some allergies given your brother's history and all your problems. I would definitely go back to the ENT who did the surgery to start. Did you have any post-surgery follow-up with him/her?

    I had a very limited sinus surgery with a turbinite reduction and it was the best thing I ever did. However, I did have some increased drainage afterward. I was told that it was because now that things were clear in my lower sinuses the upper sinuses were free to drain. You are probably expereincing something similar, especially with the septum correction. Have you tried sinus irrigation? Even if you feel it didn't help much in the past, now that you've had surgery, it will help get that gunk out.

     
    Old 06-01-2006, 01:36 PM   #3
    DJBucs2005
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    Re: Post-surgery, still experiencing nasal congest., & difficulty breathing through mouth

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by sneezydiva
    I suspect you do have some allergies given your brother's history and all your problems. I would definitely go back to the ENT who did the surgery to start. Did you have any post-surgery follow-up with him/her?
    I appreciate your help! I probably do have allergies.

    I did have a post-surgery appt. with him when he removed the splints from my nose. He told me to go back to him if I still experienced problems. I just don't trust him now. I have a hard time trusting people, ESPECIALLY doctors. I don't know this developed, but I do. So, since I feel like picking doctors out of a hat out of random, and hoping so dearly that I get a doctor who takes his time to listen to me and cares, I made an appt. with the same PCP as my dad. So, I can not go back to that ENT again until the first of July if I so choose to.


    Quote:
    Originally Posted by sneezydiva
    I had a very limited sinus surgery with a turbinite reduction and it was the best thing I ever did. However, I did have some increased drainage afterward. I was told that it was because now that things were clear in my lower sinuses the upper sinuses were free to drain. You are probably expereincing something similar, especially with the septum correction. Have you tried sinus irrigation? Even if you feel it didn't help much in the past, now that you've had surgery, it will help get that gunk out.
    I am suspecting the same thing with the increased drainage from my nose with the upper sinuses. When you say "it" in the last sentence (two times) what is the "it"?

    Is it sinus irrigation? I have not done it if that is what you are referring to, only squirted my nose with a salt water solution, but not actual irrigation.

     
    Old 06-01-2006, 03:31 PM   #4
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    Re: Post-surgery, still experiencing nasal congest., & difficulty breathing through mouth

    Yes I was referring to sinus irrigation. Before surgery, sinus irrigation only helped a little bit. But after my surgery, oh boy! It really helped get all that gunk out of there.

    You can find the NeilMed sinus rinse squeeze bottles in a lot of drugstores. It works well.

    I know what you mean about doctors. Surgeons especially don't have the greatest bedside manner. But they often are some of the best doctors. I would give the ENT who did your surgery a chance to help fix things before moving on to somene else, who may not be much better anyway.

    One thing about surgeons is they have big egos. I found that if I talked about any positives that resulted from the surgery before I talked about any remaining problems, I got a much better response.

     
    Old 06-01-2006, 04:48 PM   #5
    DJBucs2005
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    Re: Post-surgery, still experiencing nasal congest., & difficulty breathing through mouth

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by sneezydiva
    Yes I was referring to sinus irrigation. Before surgery, sinus irrigation only helped a little bit. But after my surgery, oh boy! It really helped get all that gunk out of there.

    You can find the NeilMed sinus rinse squeeze bottles in a lot of drugstores. It works well.

    I know what you mean about doctors. Surgeons especially don't have the greatest bedside manner. But they often are some of the best doctors. I would give the ENT who did your surgery a chance to help fix things before moving on to somene else, who may not be much better anyway.

    One thing about surgeons is they have big egos. I found that if I talked about any positives that resulted from the surgery before I talked about any remaining problems, I got a much better response.

    I shall give sinus irrigation a try. When are people advised to do so? What conditions and symptoms?

    Dr.'s definitely have big egos. One doctor in an article admited that "we" as doctors have big egos. Like I said, I have to wait a month before I could go back to that ENT, and I would think I'd have to go back to the same PCP I just switched from (who didn't really give me much time or care) to get a referral to the ENT who performed my surgery.

    There were few positives that arised from my surgery. I don't feel much better. There have been very times when I have felt better breathing through my mouth than before my surgery. I don't feel too much difference between before surgery and after my surgery when breathing through my nose. I feel better maybe one or two moments throughout the day when breathing through my nose.

    As always, with kind regards,

    David J.

     
    Old 06-02-2006, 09:34 AM   #6
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    Re: Post-surgery, still experiencing nasal congest., & difficulty breathing through mouth

    A lot of ENTs advise people to irrigate post surgery. My allergist told me to do it to wash away allergens from my nose and help my nosesprays reach the nasal tissues better. Whenever you are congested it really helps. Because I have allergies, I do it daily. But many just do it just when they feel congested.

    I would check with secretary at the ENT concerning your referral. They will tell you if it is still valid. After surgery, your referal should be good for a couple of post-op visits without having to go through your PCP.

     
    Old 06-07-2006, 04:21 PM   #7
    DJBucs2005
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    Re: Post-surgery, still experiencing nasal congest., & difficulty breathing through mouth

    I still have yet to try sinus irrigation actually. I would rather be convinced that it would alleviate problems.

    Is there anyone else though that could be of help? All these members on here, and only one person was kind enough to respond to my post?

    I want to resarch this problem, but I feel like I don't know where and the hale to start! I am suspecting allergies for my nasal congestion, but the trouble breathing through my mouth still has me puzzled. I just have to keep plugging away, and pray to god that I can find a good doctor.

    I would really appreciate any advice or stories!

    With kind regards,

    David J.

    Last edited by DJBucs2005; 06-07-2006 at 04:25 PM.

     
    Old 11-07-2006, 08:42 PM   #8
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    Re: Post-surgery, still experiencing nasal congest., & difficulty breathing through 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, I'd take anything better than this. I used to enjoy exercising, now it's like 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 don't know where to go next. I would like to believe the surgery was a success, and if what was intended to correct a perceived problem was done correctly, I can rule out those causes. There could still be a nose or throat problem though. Should I look into allergies? Maybe another ENT? I believe I have seen all (three) ENT's in my current network. Not sure if there are anymore. Perhaps though.

    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 11-09-2006, 04:31 AM   #9
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    Re: Post-surgery, still experiencing nasal congest., & difficulty breathing through mouth

    I had surgery to correct my deviated septum two weeks ago and was told after I got the packing out that I should irragate my nose 3 to 4 times a day.It helps tons for me.The reason I got the surgery was to be able to drain all that **** out,before the surgery because of the deviated septum the **** wouldn't drain and I would constantly have sinus infections which would cause bad pains in my face and head.Im glad the **** is comming out and if I were you I would irragate at least 2 times a day it does help.Good luck I sure hope you find the answers you are looking for,and don't give up until you do!

     
    Old 01-22-2007, 11:15 AM   #10
    crazy d
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    Re: Post-surgery, still experiencing nasal congest., & difficulty breathing through m

    I have almost exact complaint as u,have had various nasal surgery and am still ongoing with chest consultant have u got sorted yet

     
    Old 01-24-2007, 08:37 AM   #11
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    Re: Post-surgery, still experiencing nasal congest., & difficulty breathing through m

    I had nasal polyp and deviated septum surgery about 10 years ago, and my ENT advised me to do nasal irrigation after the surgery. It's the best thing I had ever done!! Do it every night and it will help keep your nose clear and keep the mucus coming out. It also prevents junk from getting all gunked up in your sinuses. You can buy a pre-made nasal rinse, use a nasal aspiration bulb filled with warm salt water, or you can use a Water Pik. Just fill the machine with warm salt water and rinse away! It really help!

     
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