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    Old 07-02-2004, 08:55 AM   #1
    VMLeichliter
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    Question I'm confused about my chronic sinusitis

    Hi, I'm Vicky and I'm new here, but I'm not new to my situation. I've been dealing with chronic sinusitis for 6 years. At first it was pain in my face and swelling. At first I would run to the dentist because I thought it was my teeth. Then I started taking sinus meds over the counter. I suffer with the pain and swelling all year long. My doctor and I counted 15 sinus infections that she actually treated. (Not to mention how many I had that I didn't see a doctor for.) Anyway, I had a ct scan a few months ago and my doctor referred me to an ENT. I was told that I have pretty severe chronic sinusitis and a deviated septum that is blocking my sinus from draining properly. I would need surgery to correct the deviated septum and work to creat an opening for my sinus to drain as well as clearing out the infection from my sinuses. Okay. My husband didn't like that answer, so I went for a second opinion. I was told the exact same thing. I asked if there was a drug I could take and I was told that the only way to clear my infection was to create a way for my sinuses to drain. My husband still didn't like that idea. Well, okay, but I'm still swollen and I still have pain. I take over the counter medication daily and I'm sure those aren't good in the long run. I went for a third opinion and this ENT says I hardly have any infection and that my sinuses are really normal and that every one has a deviated septum and that everything looks normal. Really, the last time I was on augmenton for 20 days, it just wasn't long enough for it to clear up my low grade infection. So now I've been put on Levaquin 500 mg and a steroid spray. It's been 3 days and I don't feel any better. Ironically, when I use the steroid spray, it comes right out of my nose on the side that's infected. Deep down, I don't think I have an infection. Nothing comes out of that side of my nose (even when I blow hard.) I think my first and second doctors are right, but I'm trying this for my husband. Any advise??????

     
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    Old 07-02-2004, 09:53 AM   #2
    Super123
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    Re: I'm confused about my chronic sinusitis

    Hi Vicky,

    I sympathize with your problem. I had recurrent sinus infections for almost three years, around 3-5 a year, each requiring antibiotics. Basically, after every cold I would get, it would become an infection.

    I didn't want to go for surgery, so I tried several things: sinus irrigation, which helped some; eliminating dairy, which didn't help at all; decongetsants which helped the symptoms only; and steroid sprays which really had no significant effect that I could tell. I went to the ENT several times, and he recommended the surgery but didn't push it. He told me I had a very badly deviated septum, and I did have some symptoms from that, apart from the sinus issue.

    Well, after years of this I decided to have the surgery, septoplasty with FESS on both sides. After seeing the inside of my nose through the scope I saw that the septum was probably the reason why I kept getting recurrent infections. The septal wall on the deviated side was squashing the middle turbinate right up against the maxillary sinus opening, pretty much obstructing drainage. Made sense to me.

    I had the surgery sixteen days ago, and my nose feels very good. I still irrigate, which has helped clear the post-op drainage. At my follow-up visit, I could see through the scope monitor that the opening was wiiiide open. He also removed the middle turbinate on that side too.

    If I were you, sufferring with this as much and as long as you have, I would definitely have the surgery. It's not that bad, surprisingly little post-op pain, and it will **change your life**. I don't know what your relationship with your husband is like, but he needs to understand that this is a really debilitating condition that you have an dbe supportive of your decision. It's your nose, and your life. I would definitely have the surgery.

    My surgeon was double board certified in Otolaryngology (ENT) as well as Facial Plastic & Reconstructive surgery. If you can find a similarly credentialed physician, so much the better.

    HAVE THE SURGERY.

     
    Old 07-02-2004, 05:07 PM   #3
    reader1
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    Re: I'm confused about my chronic sinusitis

    If you do not have any other symptoms of allergy and you have tried allergic treatment for your sinuses with no improvement and 2 out of 3 doctors say you have a deviated septum, well....

     
    Old 07-03-2004, 11:05 AM   #4
    chigs489
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    Re: I'm confused about my chronic sinusitis

    I would stop taking the Levaquin immediately. Aside from Cipro, it is the most dangerous drug on the market. Side effects can include peripheral neuropathy (systemic nerve damage), tendon ruptures (specifically the Achilles tendon), Serum Sickness, Psychosis, liver damage, etc.

    Dr. David Flockhart of the Univeristy of Indiana concluded that up to 30% of people taking Levaquin can expect to experience a central nervous system reaction, such as anxiety, insomnia, even psychosis.

    A book was written about these drugs called "Bitter Pills." The author's wife was destroyed by Levaquin.

    I took it for 14 days in January, and then another quinolone called Avelox in March. I have nerve damage in my elbows and feet. I also have chronic tendonitis in my wrists and ankles. Symptoms have persisted over 3 months after finishing the drug. I can't exercise or even pick my 14 month old kid off the floor.

    Dr. Jay Cohen gave congressional testimony about the dangers of these drugs. Levaquin receives more Medwatch complaints per year than almost all other drugs combined!

    Augmentin and Zithromax are safe. Levaquin and Avelox are not. Bayer gives kickbacks to doctors to push their latest poison. Demand a different medication. If your doctor says "the drug is safe." Tell him 4000 articles on the Internet, countless medwatch reports (post-marketing), and numerous researchers suggest otherwise.

    There are no mild reactions to Levaquin. If you get a sife effect, you can plan on being disabled for 6 months to a year.

     
    Old 07-06-2004, 05:03 AM   #5
    VMLeichliter
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    Re: I'm confused about my chronic sinusitis

    Just an update. I spent most of last night in pain because my face throbbed. I put Vicks Vapo Rub directly onto my face. (Something I did when I was pregnant and couldn't use anything.) I'm trying not to use the decongestant. I took a sudafed yesterday, so maybe that might be part of my problem. Also it was hot and we had high humidity. I actually had relief when I was down in my basement since it was cooler down there.

    All I know is that when my son a seven months old, he was bouncing in my arms and he ended up hitting my nose pretty hard. Not long after that occured, my sinuses started up. I've always gotten sinus infections and bronchittis, but after the hit on the nose, it's been worse. I've taken allergy medications in the past, but they never seemed to work. I even had a prescription and it didn't do anything.

    I feel like the last doctor I went to made me feel like I was making the whole situation up. I'm going to wait through the throbbing and see if it goes away. If not, I'm going back to the last ENT I saw who recommended surgery. I think I've given the medical route all I can. I can't live on antibiotics either. What happens if I get another infection in another part of my body. I've exhausted all the antibiotics to try and cure an infection that isn't really there.

    Thanks for listening. Vicky

     
    Old 07-06-2004, 07:08 AM   #6
    susieq0726
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    Re: I'm confused about my chronic sinusitis

    Hi Vicky,
    I too suffer from Chronic sinus infections. I had no typical symptoms when it was discovered on a CT scan. I had no drainage, runny nose, sneezing - None of that. I had some weird feeling pressure in my forehead and felt very unbalanced. Not really dizzy, but not right either.
    I took Augmentin for 14 days and then was prescribed Avelox. YUCK! Don't take that! I took one pill and threw the rest down the drain. Made me feel very strange.
    My doctor then put me on Bactrim for 20 days and Singulair. I haven't been taking the Singulair on a regular basis, but did finish the Bactrim.
    Another thing I found VERY helpful was steaming. I bought one of those individual face steamers that have a eucalyptus ring (smells like Vick's) that goes in the middle of the steamer. I steam two to three times a day for 15 minutes per session. I really helps clear your head. You might want to try that.

     
    Old 07-06-2004, 11:30 AM   #7
    VMLeichliter
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    Re: I'm confused about my chronic sinusitis

    Hi, Thanks, I have one of those. I bought it just for this reason. I also have one of those cool eye masks that I stash in the fridge and put over my eyes too.

    Another thing I thought of: my first two doctors said I virtually had no opening for sinus drainage on the right. So I'm spraying this stuff up my nose and it comes right back out. If my drainage can't get out of my nose, how is this cortison spray supposed to get in??????? Grrrrr. I acidentally ate on the right side today and now my face throbs. I know it's not my teeth because my dentist just examined them. Thanks for listening. Vicky

     
    Old 07-06-2004, 01:50 PM   #8
    Super123
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    Re: I'm confused about my chronic sinusitis

    Vicki,

    I hope you decide to have the surgery. It will change your life and once you recover, which really won't take that long, it will end the cycle of sufferring you are enduring.

    If you have no drainage space, then secretions will stagnate and bacteria will colonize and set up an infection. Fixing the septum equalizes the available space on either side, and widening of the sinus passages promotes better drainage. The surgeon may also remove the middle turbinate (as in my case), which will mean it will never swell up and get stuffy again.

    Go for it.

     
    Old 07-06-2004, 01:57 PM   #9
    tat888
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    Re: I'm confused about my chronic sinusitis

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by VMLeichliter
    Hi, Thanks, I have one of those. I bought it just for this reason. I also have one of those cool eye masks that I stash in the fridge and put over my eyes too.

    Another thing I thought of: my first two doctors said I virtually had no opening for sinus drainage on the right. So I'm spraying this stuff up my nose and it comes right back out. If my drainage can't get out of my nose, how is this cortison spray supposed to get in??????? Grrrrr. I acidentally ate on the right side today and now my face throbs. I know it's not my teeth because my dentist just examined them. Thanks for listening. Vicky
    Vicky,

    It sounds like you are still confused about why the doctors recommend the surgery. I would ask for further explanation until you feel comfortable, and pick the doc who can talk in laymans terms and can explain it so you know why and what they are going to do. Forget that third doc he is bad news. Docs that talk like that don't want to do anything, so he certainly shouldn't have a scapel in his hand ever.

    I would ask if you have polyps and whatever kind of structural defects you might have besides the swelling. And I would ask what he belives is causing the swelling/inflammation/ and irritation. Steroid type sprays etc are meant to reduce the swelling, shrink the tissue , get the redness etc out, that should be your first attempt but unfortunately if it usually works to some degree the doc may just keep prescribing it to you and long term that is only taking care of the symptoms not the problem. I can't recall if you had an MRI but other things such as tumors etc may need to be ruled out. You definitely need a work up and since you didn't mention it I wonder if it was real obvious to the doc that it was a simple matter of opening the passageway by reconstructing your septum etc. And it could be he didn't look in there very far due to the extreme swelling.

    Lastly, I would consider some alternatives, such as parasite zapping, or echinacea, things to boost the immune system, because those antibiotics that you take although very good especially augmentin, can wreak havoc on your immune system. My last concern would be the constant nasal drip on the other side of that blockage of tissue, which may be dripping into your lungs. I have known people who end up with lung problems requiring inhalers due to the damage from the constant drip etc. I am no ENT but....we do need to ask questions and take some part of our health into our own hands. Good Luck!

     
    Old 07-06-2004, 01:59 PM   #10
    rush_rulz
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    Re: I'm confused about my chronic sinusitis

    I am in a situation very similar to yours. I only saw one ENT though and he just rubbed it off as needing the surgery, too but I didn't feel like he really listened to my story...while I've tried everything he suggested like avoiding smoke and not sleeping w/ pets in my bed, I still get on average about 4 or 5 sinus infections a year and it does not matter what time of the year it is I am sneezing coughing and my eyes are red. That same ENT seemed to to think it was my SINUSES Causing my allergies when I've always thought it went the other way around....? Anyone else heard of this? Anyway, I think getting 2nd and 3rd opinions are good but it's hard to find a dr. who will really listen to you! At this point I think i'd try the surgery just to breath right again, as well as smell right! I'm pretty sure i'm allergic to stuff that grows around my house. Never been tested for allergies (have you?) but since I've moved in w/my husband the sinus pressure part of it, the pain and all has gotten worse.....still i've always had an intolerance to 2nd hand smoke.
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    Old 07-07-2004, 06:26 AM   #11
    VMLeichliter
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    Re: I'm confused about my chronic sinusitis

    Hi,

    I'm ready for the surgery. I think I've given all the other methods (less invasive) a fair shot. It's my husband that doesn't seem to be on board. Recnetly, he had a herniated disk in his back that caused him to go numb from the waist down. When we finally got to the right doctor (after the chain of command so to speak.) he was scheduled for surgery the very next day. It's been a long recovery process and I had to jump up to the bat. I was mother, father, chauffer (he couldn't drive) and so on. Not to mention run our business and do all the little stuff he always did. We are six weeks post op and there are still things he can't do that I have to do. Maybe that's partially why I'm so run down. My husband is just starting to get back into his regular activities. I think my husband feels if I have surgery right now, then that's another delay in getting done what he needs to get done. I'm so swollen right now that I think I'm calling my last doctor to set up the surgery. I can't take the pain and swelling anymore.
    Vicky

     
    Old 07-07-2004, 08:32 AM   #12
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    Re: I'm confused about my chronic sinusitis

    Good luck Vicky, let us know how you do after the surgery. Sometimes there are just no alternatives.

     
    Old 07-07-2004, 11:01 AM   #13
    Super123
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    Re: I'm confused about my chronic sinusitis

    Hi Vicki,

    The recovery from sinus surgery is about a week (no bending lifting, exertion etc.), and for another week or so you will need to take it easy lifting. I was back to running 3.5 miles two weeks after surgery. The recovery really is not that bad, and is NOTHING compared to lumbar disc surgery! If you have any relatives, in-laws etc. that can help out for a few days after you'll be fine.

    Bottom line, if you have an anatomic abnormality (septum) chronic, associated withrecurrent sinusitis then there is reason to repair the abnormality. No one can **guarantee** improvement but the statistics are very good.

    Whatever you decide, ask questions. If you have to, schedule an office visit with the ENT just to talk about the procedure. My doc showed me a video of someone's procedure through the scope, and he showed me mine after I was done. If that would make you feel better, do that. There are also plenty of web resources available. Google "FESS septoplasty" and see what comes up.

    Rush rulz, have you gotten the "Feedback" album yet? I can't wait! I was a little disappointed with "Vapor Trails", though.

     
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