Apollo Hospital MumbaiShort Stay SurgeriesBilateral FESS (Functional Endoscopic Sinus Surgery)

Bilateral FESS (Functional Endoscopic Sinus Surgery)

Bilateral FESS (Functional Endoscopic Sinus Surgery)

What is chronic rhinosinusitis?

Sinusitis is the inflammation or swelling of nasal cavity and paranasal sinuses. If the condition lasts at least 12 consecutive weeks despite the medical treatment, then it is called chronic rhinosinusitis. In this condition, the lining of the sinuses gets inflamed and swollen, leading to increased mucus production. It may also lead to nasal congestion when swollen sinuses obstruct nasal discharge.


  • Nasal congestion or a stuffy nose
  • Nasal discharge
  • Facial pain or tenderness on the face, especially around the nose, eyes, and forehead
  • Postnasal drip (discharge down the throat)
  • Decreased sense of smell

Causes of chronic rhinosinusitis:

  • Blockage in the nasal passage
  • Exposure to allergens or airborne irritants
  • Deviated nasal septum
  • Immune system disorders
  • Repeated viral infections
  • Presence of nasal polyps

Complications/risks associated with chronic rhinosinusitis:

Complications are rare and occurs when sinus infection spreads to other parts of the body. If the infection spreads to eye socket, you may experience decrease in vision. Permanent loss of sense of smell can be seen if the infection spreads to olfactory nerve. If the infection spreads to brain and spinal cord, it is called meningitis.


The diagnosis of chronic rhinosinusitis is based on the presence of at least two of the above-mentioned symptoms for about 12 consecutive weeks and also response to previous treatments. However, the diagnosis is confirmed by an imaging test such as CT scan or sinus endoscopy. Sinus endoscopy is a procedure to examine nasal and sinus passages using an endoscope (a thin tube-like device consisting of camera and a light source). It is an office procedure.


Bilateral FESS (functional endoscopic sinus surgery) is a minimally invasive procedure which uses endoscope to enlarge the opening of paranasal sinuses. The surgery is performed to remove the infected material, open up blocked nasal passages, and restore the function of nose and sinuses.
In a FESS procedure, the surgeon removes the damaged tissue and bone with the help of an endoscope keeping the patient under anesthesia. Afterwards, a temporary nasal packing is placed in the nose. This is to support newly opened sinus passage and absorb any excess fluid. Traditional nasal packing are removed after surgery, which may be painful. However, dissolvable nasal packing are also available which doesn’t require removal. AT TIMES OUR HOSPITAL OFFERS NOSE SURGERY WITHOUT PACKING.
You may feel your nose is blocked immediately after the surgery, which eventually improves. In very rare cases, there may be bruising around the eye.


1. Does sinusitis require surgery?

Sinusitis requires surgery when it is progressed to chronic condition or the condition is irresponsive to the medical treatment. It also depends on severity of the symptoms and your overall health. Your doctor is the best person to tell if you really require a surgery based on your health condition.

2. How long does it take to recover from the sinusitis surgery?

The symptoms usually improve within 10 to 14 days. However, the recovery time usually depends on the type of surgery you had (ethmoidectomy, septoplasty with turbinoplasty etc.). Your doctor will also provide a set of instructions after the surgery for a quick recovery.

3. What are the risks associated with FESS surgery?

It is common to have mild pain after any surgery and doctor may prescribe pain killers if necessary. If you experience bleeding, eye problems, or any other side-effects after the surgery, inform your doctor immediately.

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