Endoscopic trans-septal frontal sinusotomy: The rationale and results of an alternative technique AMERICAN JOURNAL OF RHINOLOGY McLaughlin, R. B., Hwang, P. H., Lanza, D. C. 1999; 13 (4): 279-287


Endoscopic transseptal frontal sinusotomy (TSFS) represents an alternate approach to surgical treatment of chronic frontal sinus disease that is refractory to traditional modes of medical and surgical therapy. We retrospectively reviewed our experience with endoscopic TSFS from 1995-1997. Twenty-one procedures were performed through a transseptal approach. One patient was excluded for failure to follow-up, for a total of 20 procedures. Patients were followed with serial endoscopic examinations and a telephone questionnaire with a mean follow-up of 12 months (Range 1-24 months) and 16 months (range 5-31), respectively. The primary indication for surgery was frontal recess stenosis after previous endoscopic frontal sinusotomy in 17/20 (85%). Three patients were considered poor candidates for a primary endoscopic frontal sinusotomy. Patency was maintained in all patients during the follow-up period. A diameter of greater than 3 mm was confirmed by passage of a curved suction in 19/20 (95%). Of the 19 patients that were evaluated via a telephone questionnaire, 17 patients (89.5%) reported some degree of improvement in their nasal/sinus symptoms, and 12/18 patients (67%) felt the frequency of medication requirements was less than that before undergoing endoscopic TSFS. We conclude that endoscopic TSFS represents an alternate approach to the frontal sinus that may be used by the experienced endoscopist, to augment treatment of refractory frontal sinus disease. This procedure seems especially suited for revision surgery in those patients with acquired frontal sinus stenosis. In revision operations with distorted anatomical landmarks, localization of the frontal sinus may be improved with the aid of 3-dimensional computer assisted localization systems. Unlike traditional frontal sinus obliteration, endoscopic TSFS does not preclude radiographic assessment postoperatively, and allows for endoscopic evaluation of the frontal sinus in the office setting.

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