Eustachian Tube Dilation
Eustachian Tube Dysfunction is characterized by inflammation along the opening of the Eustachian Tube opening, preventing adequate ventilation of the middle ear space. This commonly leads to a sensation of pressure in the ears. Patients also complain of not being able to “pop” their ears open.
The eustachian tube opening exists in the back of the nasal passage in a region called the nasopharynx. As a result of this, it is not uncommon for patients with eustachian tube dysfunction(ear pressure) to also have chronic sinus or nasal congestion – they often go hand in hand.
It is not uncommon for patients to experience persistent ear pressure at some point in time, however, these symptoms should naturally resolve. When such symptoms last for quite some time, despite medications such as intranasal steroid sprays, decongestants, antihistamines, or saline sprays – further examination is recommended.
In cases of persistent eustachian tube dysfunction despite medication, nasal endoscopy is performed to rule out any physical blockage of the eustachian tube opening. If there is no physical obstruction, patients may be candidates for Eustachian Tube Dilation.
Eustachian Tube Dilation utilizes a balloon catheter to enter the eustachian tube via a trans-nasal approach. Dilation of the catheter provides opening of the eustachian tube, alleviating symptoms of middle ear pressure.
Eustachian Tube Dilation is an office procedure performed under local anesthesia through the nose, therefore, the patient does not have any visible incisions or bruising.
The recovery time after eustachian tube dilation is short. No packing is used during this procedure. In many cases, this procedure is performed alongside sinus or nasal procedures for sinusitis or nasal congestion.
If you would like to learn more about Eustachian Tube Dilation, feel free to contact us for further assessment and treatment.