Balloon Sinuplasty: What To Expect and What You Shouldn’t

If you are considering a Balloon Sinuplasty procedure, or balloon sinus surgery, you’ll likely want to know what to expect. It’s always good to ask questions and discuss specific details with your doctor before undergoing any type of treatment.

Balloon Sinuplasty is a minimal invasive procedure that uses a small balloon to dilate and widen the sinus openings to help treat blocked sinuses. Many patients who suffer from chronic sinusitis may benefit from undergoing balloon sinus surgery.

There are a number of factors to take in consideration if you are thinking about a Balloon Sinuplasty procedure or wondering whether it could be a helpful treatment option for you. The more informed you can be about the procedure, the better to understand the outcomes you can anticipate.

Here’s a look at some of the most frequently asked patient questions about Balloon Sinuplasty—and a general answer guide to what you may, or may not, be able to expect:

Should you expect to be a candidate for the procedure?

Not every patient is a good candidate for a Balloon Sinuplasty procedure. Together, you and your ENT doctor will determine whether it may be a beneficial treatment option for you.

When deciding if a balloon sinus procedure is the right treatment option some factors to be considered include:

History of sinus infections

  • How frequently sinus infections occur, how long they last, and if they’ve required antibiotics. -How they have been managed and how effective and sustained previous treatments have been.
  • If further medical intervention has been tired on a preventative basis, such as the use of nasal steroids and sinus rinses, and if they’ve been successful.

In cases where the opening of the sinuses may not be the problem (or not the only or root problem), Balloon Sinuplasty is generally not considered beneficial or the appropriate treatment.

Some conditions balloon sinus surgery would NOT be expected to help might be:

  • Anatomical issues, like a deviated septum
  • Fungal infections
  • Nasal polyps
  • Untreated allergic rhinitis (nasal allergies)

There are some cases, as well, where a balloon dilation procedure may be used as part of a treatment plan and/or in conjunction with other treatment methods. It depends on the individual patient’s situation.

What to expect during the procedure
It’s an in-office procedure, typically fairly quick, and you can expect to go home the same day. It’s also usually performed under local anesthesia or with numbing medication to your nose. In most cases, patients can expect to drive themselves home, if sedative medication is not administered. Patients can typically expect minimal pain, and perhaps, mild discomfort.

What to expect In terms of risk and possible complications?

Especially compared to traditional sinus surgery, there is minimal risk involved in Balloon Sinuplasty. No major risk of bleeding or damage to the tissue around the sinuses Of course, there’s always some risk associated with any procedure, but the minimally invasive, proven safe and effective technique makes the risk of complications rare. You should talk with your ENT to learn more about the potential risks and discuss any concerns you may have.

Recovery: what to expect after the procedure

You can expect minimal downtime and generally, a quick and easy recovery. Usually, patients can expect to be back to normal the day following the procedure. However, it may still be advisable to take the day off. Most people are able to resume normal activities within a day or two.

Following the procedure, it’s possible you may experience mucous and/or bloody drainage. The day after the procedure, some congestion and mild pain may also occur. Typically, any pain can usually be managed with over-the-counter pain relievers—but your doctor can help provide you with more specific information, aftercare instructions, and address your specific case, so you can better understand what to expect before, during, and after your experience.

Expectations for improvement

Most patients naturally want to know what they can anticipate in terms of a timeline for improvement. Of course, every case is slightly different, just as every patient is unique. So, really, there is no one-size-fits-all answer. Definitely be sure to personally talk to your doctor about more specific details, as they relate to you and your unique situation.

Generally speaking, however, these are some positive changes that may be expected after a Balloon Sinuplasty procedure:

  • Painful sinus pressure: you could expect relief within a week.
  • Chronic sinus blockages, a tight, stuffy feeling in the top of your nose, or the sensation of congestion: this may be expected to go away within two or three weeks.
  • The biggest change, though, may well be the decrease in the number of sinus infections. For example: going from four or more sinus infections a year to one—or maybe even less.

This will vary by individual, of course; it is important to note these are just general guidelines and information, you should talk to an ENT doctor personally to discuss your specific sinus health issues and treatment expectations. 

Nevertheless, the positive benefits many patients can experience after Balloon Sinuplasty are myriad. Improved quality of life, better breathing, less fatigue, less snoring, etc. Essentially, getting back to feeling more YOU.


Is chronic sinusitis is dragging you down, making you feel miserable, symptoms that never seem to go away or always come back? Maybe it’s time find your solution.

If you are considering a Balloon Sinuplasty, or interested in learning more, call The Ohio Sinus Institute today.

We have the Balloon Sinuplasty expertise, experience, and state-of-the-art technologies and techniques to bring you personalized care and the most advanced sinus treatment options to help you achieve relieve. We’ll assess your needs, and together, identify the best treatment options and plan that’s right for you.

Contact our office today to schedule your consultation!