Sinus Disease in Children: Causes and Symptoms
Sinus disease is quite common among children, especially in Memphis. Nationally, over $1.8 billion is spent on treating children with sinus disease every year. The impact of sinus disease in children, as estimated by parents, is higher than that of asthma.
Sinus disease in children can range from the sniffles and allergies to more severe sinus infections which can lead to infections of the eye and the brain if left untreated.
The most common symptoms that children display: difficulty breathing through the nose, headaches, runny nose, nose bleeds and changes in vision. Many children in our area also suffer from significant allergies which can predispose them to future sinus infections if left untreated, and potentially for the development of nasal polyps.
Dr. Sheyn: Pediatric Sinusitis Treatment
At UTHSC ENT, we’re proud to count Dr. Anthony Sheyn among our Dream Team, specifically in the pediatrics division. One of Dr. Sheyn’s primary focus areas is the treatment of children with sinus disease.
There are many ways to treat pediatric sinus disease including: antibiotics, allergy medication, sinus irrigation and surgery. Up to 50% of our patients only require appropriate medical management rather than surgical intervention after evaluation to treat their disease.
Additional Treatment Options:
If surgery is required, Dr. Sheyn uses an up-to-date algorithm specifically designed for the treatment of pediatric sinusitis.
The simplest and most useful surgery is the removal of the adenoids, which can be an effective treatment if over half of the patients undergoing this procedure. Slightly dilating the drainage pathway of the maxillary (cheek) sinus and irrigating (washing out) the sinus can improve the results of the adenoid removal significantly. This has proven to be effective in a number of research studies.
If adenoidectomy fails, or the disease is too severe at the initial evaluation, then a formal sinus surgery (known as functional sinus surgery) will likely need to be performed. This procedure utilizes a previously obtained CT image to only approach the affected sinuses through the nasal cavity without any external incisions.
This procedure is relatively rare in children under age 12 and becomes much more frequent, and an even preferred approach, in children over age 12 and is best performed by physicians who have been fellowship trained in Rhinology or Pediatric Otolaryngology.
Our Dream Team is here help
Luckily, our Dream Team boasts a number of fellowship-trained specialists in rhinology and pediatric otolaryngology! We truly provide world class treatment in your hometown.
If your child has sinus disease or you are concerned about your child’s ability to breathe through the nose, please reach out! We would be happy to help!