General otolaryngology is community-focused, primary care of the ear, nose, and throat (ENT) for children and adults. General Otolaryngologists have training and board-certification that covers the full spectrum of ear, nose, and throat care and are the first stop for patients with routine ENT issues.
The General Otolaryngologist is able to manage a wide variety of ENT disorders, and can quickly refer a patient to an ENT-subspecialist when needed [rhinology (sinus); pediatric otolaryngology; facial plastic surgery; head and neck surgery; otology (ear); laryngology (voice and swallowing); sleep surgery]. They can also provide coverage of hospital emergency rooms and inpatient consults that require the opinion of an ENT specialist.
General otolaryngologists are often the most experienced ENT to deal with issues such as seasonal allergy; acute and chronic sinusitis; tonsil and adenoid enlargement; snoring and sleep apnea; hoarseness; dizziness; tinnitus; hearing loss; and masses and lumps of the head and neck. Typically, their office is located in a community office setting for ease of patient access.
The general otolaryngologist specializes in treatments that can be performed on-site in the office under local anesthesia, and quicker outpatient surgeries that can be performed in an ambulatory surgery center. Newer minimally invasive interventions include office-based radiofrequency for turbinate reduction; Latera implants for chronic nasal obstruction; Pillar implants for chronic snoring; Eustachian tube balloon for ear popping and pressure; balloon sinuplasty for isolated sinus cavity obstruction.