What is Radiofrequency Turbinate Reduction?
New developments in medical technology have made it possible to comfortably open your nasal airway under local anesthesia in your ENT’s office. Really. This approach saves time, money, and keeps you on your feet. It is even covered by insurance.
The procedure goes like this. When you are comfortably seated in the exam chair, local anesthetic is sprayed into your nose. When that has kicked in the same topical medication is soaked onto cotton and placed in there for a while to further numb your nose. Finally, more local anesthetic is injected into the turbinates directly.
After you are completely numbed, a slim probe is introduced into the nose using a small endoscope.
It is applied at 5 or 6 spots along the turbinate and radiofrequency energy is transmitted through the lining (mucosa) into the swollen tissues that cause your obstruction. That injury shrinks the turbinate so, when you are healed up, there is more space for breathing.
After the procedure, you walk to your car and drive home. Simple, effective, and quick.
Mark T. Brown, MD, FACS