Turbinate Hypertrophy

What is Turbinate Hypertrophy?

Turbinate hypertrophy is a type of nasal and sinus issue. Blockage occurs when turbinates in the long, narrow nasal passageways are enlarged and begin to impair proper airflow, which can lead to nasal breathing problems. However, it is treatable with the proper over-the-counter or prescription medicines or surgical treatments.

Turbinate hypertrophy can occur anywhere along the nasal passageway and -- whether it’s the superior, middle, or inferior turbinate -- it happens when the passageways’ turbinate tissues swell or push against the nasal septum and can lead to the symptoms detailed below.

What Are Turbinate Hypertrophy Symptoms?

Symptoms of turbinate hypertrophy vary with each individual person. These symptoms can be temporary or life-impacting depending on the severity and duration, and can be impactful if left untreated.

Common symptoms of turbinate hypertrophy include:

  • Chronic mouth breathing
  • Altered sense of smell
  • Runny nose
  • Snoring
  • Extended nasal congestion
  • Mild facial pain
  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Nosebleeds

These symptoms are akin to having a cold that won’t go away and may be related to another condition referred to as nasal septal deviation.

If you are experiencing these symptoms, contact us today to see how we can help your turbinate hypertrophy.

What Causes Turbinate Hypertrophy?

Turbinate hypertrophy is often caused by a bodily response from inspiring different environmental and seasonal allergens, or the result of experiencing chronic sinus inflammation.

Potential causes of turbinate hypertrophy include:

  • Allergic rhintis
  • Non-allergic rhintis
  • Upper respiratory infection
  • Medications
  • Hormonal changes

Other factors that can exacerbate turbinate hypertrophy include:

  • Deviated septum
  • Nasal valve collapse
  • Nasal deformity
  • Nasal disease

How to Manage and Treat Turbinate Hypertrophy

Treating turbinate hypertrophy depends on the specific issue at hand. It’s best to see an ENT (Ear, Nose, and Throat) specialist to have your nose examined for a diagnosis. Once determined to be turbinate hypertrophy, there are many options available to alleviate your symptoms:

Medical therapies can include a nasal spray to alleviate symptoms. There are several that may be offered:

  • Nasal saline sprays or rinsing
  • Nasal antihistamine sprays
  • Nasal steroid sprays
  • Allergy testing and injections may be required if the above do not control symptoms.

Turbinate Surgery

In the case that medicinal therapies haven’t improved your symptoms, surgery may be an option. Typically, an ENT specialist will surgically decrease the size of the turbinate to increase airflow of the passageway while preserving its functionality. This can often be performed in the office.

Book a Consultation

Here at Sierra Nevada ENT we are dedicated to resolving your ear, nose, or throat problems with treatment plans tailored to your individual needs. Contact us today to book a consultation.

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