Fast Facts: Chronic Sinusitis, Sinus Surgery and PROPEL® Sinus Stent
What are the symptoms of chronic sinusitis? How common is it?
- The condition affects one in eight adults – 29 million Americans. One of the most common health conditions in the U.S.
- The sinuses are air-‐filled cavities located within the bones around the nose and eyes that allow for natural airflow and drainage.
- In patients with chronic sinusitis, the sinus linings become inflamed, blocking the natural drainage pathways and leading to chronic infections and nasal blockage. Ongoing inflammation lasting longer than 12 weeks is chronic sinusitis.
- Sufferers are often truly miserable. Symptoms include drainage of thick yellow or green mucus; nasal blockage or congestion; difficulty breathing; pain and tenderness around the eyes, cheeks, nose and forehead; reduced sense of smell and taste; fatigue and even depression.
- Associated with a heavy societal productivity cost of more than $12 billion annually in the U.S., with 24 days of lost work per patient incurred each year
- Significant impact to quality of life. Studies have found sinusitis can be more difficult than chronic back pain or congestive heart failure.
How is it different than the symptoms of allergies or the common cold?
- For people with chronic sinusitis, cold and allergy season seem to last an eternity.
- The symptoms are similar to those of the common cold, or a short-‐term acute sinusitis episode, but in chronic sinusitis the symptoms last longer – usually more than 12 weeks.
- Fever isn’t a common sign of chronic sinusitis, as it may be with the common cold or acute sinusitis.
- Many people with chronic sinusitis also have allergies, which have a specific cause and may come and go seasonally. What are current treatments for chronic sinusitis? When is sinus surgery a good option?
- Chronic sinusitis often requires a complex combination of surgical and medical treatments.
- Since chronic sinusitis is an inflammatory condition, it should not be treated with antibiotics unless there is a bacterial infection. If sinusitis stems from a virus, fungus or physical causes, such as nasal polyps or a deviated septum, antibiotic therapy won’t work.
- When sinusitis does not respond to medications, surgery to enlarge the openings that drain the sinuses may be an option.
- Nearly half of sinusitis sufferers have never seen an ENT about their condition.
- Each year, 500,000 patients undergo ethmoid sinus surgery to treat the condition.
- The goal of surgical treatment for chronic sinusitis is to enlarge the inflamed or blocked sinus pathways.
- Although sinus surgery is effective, 64% of patients experience recurrent symptoms within the first year; with 10% undergoing revision surgery within the first year due to recurrent obstruction of the sinus cavity.
Are there any new innovations in treating chronic sinusitis? What are the benefits?
- New breakthrough treatment: PROPEL, a spring‐like stent expands to prop open the ethmoid sinus after sinus surgery and gradually delivers an anti‐inflammatory medicine directly to the sinus lining, and then dissolves into the body.
- The dissolvable, drug‐releasing stent results in improved surgical outcomes by reducing post‐operative inflammation and scarring, reducing the need for additional surgical procedures as well as oral steroids and their potential side effects (mood swings, cataracts, weight gain, etc).
- Three clinical trials have demonstrated that the implant is safe and maintains the results of sinus surgery by holding open the sinus pathways and decreasing post-‐operative scarring and inflammation.
- Approved by FDA in 2011 (smaller size in 2012); adoption growing rapidly with over 100,000 patients treated to date.