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Health Plan Participation:

Huntsville Ear, Nose & Throat, P.C. accepts most major health insurance plans.

However, please confirm whether we accept your specific health insurance at the time you call and schedule your appointment. Our staff will gladly answer all of your questions. Please feel free to call our offices during regular business hours.

This listing reflects current Huntsville Ear, Nose & Throat, P.C. contracts:

  • Aetna HMO, EPO, QPOS, Open Choice PPO
  • Blue Advantage HMO & PPO
  • Blue Cross/Blue Shield PPO
  • Blue Choice POS
  • Medicare
  • Unicare/Wellpoint PPO & HMO
  • United Health Care, POS and PPO

We also participate in a variety of PPO and government plans. Check with our office at 256-882-0165 to confirm participation.

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Huntsville Physician Using Tiny Balloon to Help Reduce Patients’ Sinus Problems

by Paul Gattis,
on May 10, 2013

Neeta Kohli-Dang, M.D.Huntsville, AL – A small balloon is producing big results in easing sinus problems, according to a Huntsville doctor.

Dr. Neeta Kohli-Dang, an ear, nose and throat specialist, has been performing balloon sinus dilation on patients for about two years, she said.

The basics: Dr. Dang inserts a catheter into the troublesome nasal passage and inflates a small balloon, which expands the nasal passage.

What’s most innovative about the procedure, Dr. Dang said, is that it can be done in her office with local anesthetic – unlike many nasal procedures that require general anesthesia in a hospital.

“It’s a minimally invasive procedure,” Dr. Dang said. “It can be done in the office with select patients. There is very little recovery. It opens blocked sinus pathways, allowing infection to drain with quick resolution of infection. We’re looking at good results, quick return in recovery and minimal down time.”

Dr. Dang allowed a Times reporter and photographer to sit in on a procedure recently. The patient is reclined in a chair and Dr. Dang uses an HD monitor to help her guide the catheter. The procedure took 10 to 15 minutes and the patient was downing a Frappucinno from Starbucks immediately after it was over.

Most insurance companies cover the procedure, she said, though some may require that it be performed in a hospital rather than an office.

“The key is which sinus is involved,” Dr. Dang said. “If they have a lot of sinus infections involving the cheek sinus or the frontal sinus, which is located in the forehead, those patients are very good candidates for balloon sinuplasty. Even the sphenoid sinus, which is located further back, can be dilated as well with the balloon.”

So what’s exactly is that balloon doing when it’s inflated?

“It involves tiny microfractures of the bones surrounding the natural ostium or the opening of the sinus cavity,” Dr. Dang said. “Once you’ve microfractured it with the balloon, it stays open.”

Where should sinus pain sufferers seek treatment?

If you suffer from severe sinus pain, you should seek treatment from an otolaryngologist–head and neck surgeon, a specialist who can treat your condition with medical and/or surgical remedies.

What are the consequences of not treating infected sinuses?

Not seeking treatment for sinusitis will result in unnecessary pain and discomfort. In rare circumstances, meningitis or brain abscess and infection of the bone or bone marrow can occur.

What does sinus surgery accomplish?

The surgery should enlarge the natural opening to the sinuses, leaving as many cilia in place as possible. Otolaryngologist–head and neck surgeons have found endoscopic surgery to be highly effective in restoring normal function to the sinuses. The procedure removes areas of obstruction, resulting in the normal flow of mucus.

What does the surgical procedure entail?

The basic endoscopic surgical procedure is performed under local or general anesthesia. The patient returns to normal activities within four days; full recovery takes about four weeks.

When is sinus surgery necessary?

ucus is developed by the body to act as a lubricant. In the sinus cavities, the lubricant is moved across mucous membrane linings toward the opening of each sinus by millions of cilia (a mobile extension of a cell). Inflammation from allergy causes membrane swelling and the sinus opening to narrow, thereby blocking mucus movement. If antibiotics are not effective, sinus surgery can correct the problem.

Will any changes in lifestyle be suggested during treatment?

Smoking is never condoned, but if one has the habit, it is important to refrain during treatment for sinus problems. A special diet is not required, but drinking extra fluids helps to thin mucus.