ENT Services

ENT Services in Webster

Frequently, a patient’s complaint of hearing loss results in a dual evaluation by both a physician and an audiologist. This dual evaluation begins with the physician performing a basic medical examination to determine if further audiological testing is necessary. If the physician determines that such testing is necessary, the testing will be administered by an audiologist so that the nature and extent of the hearing loss can be ascertained. The physician and audiologist will then collaborate to determine the best course of treatment for the patient.
Chronic Sinus Disease & Sinusitis

Sinusitis is defined as the inflammation or swelling of the sinus’s tissue lining. While healthy sinuses are filled with air, they can become blocked and full of fluid. When this happens, germs are prone to grow, which can lead to an infection. Sinusitis can be characterized as either acute (which generally lasts around 10 days, but can last up to 4 weeks, usually occurring following a cold or the flu) or chronic (greater than 3 months in duration, usually resulting from constant nasal irritation by allergens or anatomic obstruction).

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Allergies & Allergy Testing

With roughly 50 million people in the United States suffering from allergies, it is one of the major causes of illness in the country. Defined as when the immune system reacts to a foreign substance (for example, a certain food, pollen, or pet dander), allergies and their symptoms can be highly varied, including a stuffy nose, postnasal drip, pain or pressure in the face, headaches, itchy eyes and much more.

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Deviated Nasal Septum
The nasal septum is the wall in the nose that separates the left side of the nose from the right. The nasal septum is deviated when it is bent more to one side than the other, which can lead to difficulty breathing through the nose on the obstructed side. Deviation of the nasal septum can be congenital, or is the common result of a broken nose.

If the nasal congestion cannot be managed medically, or if the deviation is too significant, the nasal septum needs to be moved back to the middle with a surgical procedure. This surgery is done entirely through the nose, does not require any external incisions, and will not affect the external shape or appearance of the nose. If appropriate, this surgery can often be performed in conjunction with endoscopic sinus surgery.

Dizziness & Vertigo
Dizziness, also known as vertigo, is an inner ear-related disorder that causes a sensation of abnormal movement. It can result from an infection leading to inflammation of the balance nerve or inner ear, overproduction of fluid within the inner ear, small stones that get dislodged and enter improper locations, or even certain types of tumors. Due to the proximity of the balance nerve to the nerve responsible for hearing, hearing loss, noise in the ear (tinnitus), or a sensation of fullness in the ear is often associated with vertigo.

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Pediatric Ear, Nose, Throat
Here at Clear Lake Medical Center ENT, we take care of all ages from newborns to the elderly. In particular as parents themselves, our providers understand the need for a compassionate approach to treating children. Children are greeted with fun, dedicated waiting area for kids and when it is time for their visit, they will receive top-notch care that ends with a treat. Parents find that their kids love coming to the ENT’s office instead of dreading their appointment.

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Sore Throat & Tonsillitus
Tonsils are small round tissue masses located at the back of the throat. Tonsils can become infected or enlarged, which leads to difficulty breathing at night and choking episodes. Additionally, tonsils may harbor small stones that can lead to bad breath and cause significant social distress. These are all indications that the tonsils should be removed.

Adenoids, located in a region of the body called the nasopharynx (at the very back of the nose), are a normal anatomic part in children and young adults. They can become enlarged or infected, and can lead to snoring, disrupted sleep, nasal congestion, chronic runny nose, and can also be associated with recurring ear infections.

The tonsils and adenoids are removed through the mouth, with no external incisions, and can be excised either individually or simultaneously, depending on the needs of the patient.

Balloon Sinuplasty
If you suffer from any form of chronic sinus pain, Clear Lake Medical Center ENT wants to help you find the right long-term solution so dealing with pain doesn’t dominate your everyday life. We’re proud to offer balloon sinuplasty from ACCLARENT, Inc., a proven solution for eligible patients that doesn’t involve invasive surgery or medications.

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Ear Aches & Infections
Ear tubes are often required in patients — usually children — with recurring ear infections, persistent fluid behind the ear drum causing hearing or speech difficulties, or significant ear paint from poor equalization of the middle ear space. The surgery is performed through the ear canal with the use of a microscope. A small incision is made in the ear drum and a pressure-equalizing tube is placed.

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Skin lesion removal

Skin lesions that cause irritation with itching, bleeding, pain, blocking vision/breathing/eating, may be removed in the clinic for medical reasons.

These lesions are often submitted for pathologic review to ensure that there is not an unusual or concerning process involved.

rhinoplasty (cosmetic and reconstructive)

Rhinoplasty, or a nose job, involves the surgical reshaping of nasal cartilage and bone.  Reasons to have a rhinoplasty range from cosmetic – to improve or change the appearance of the nose for personal gain or preference, to medical – for difficulty breathing and severe deformity following nasal trauma, or congenital development of the nose that affects nasal breathing.  When breathing is compromised, the septum or divider of the nose is often crooked.

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ear pinning

Prominent ears are often hereditary with different degrees of severity.  Surgical correction is often sought to avoid social ridicule.  When a child is psychologically affected by their prominent ears, ear pinning may be covered by insurance.  The recommended time for correction is at 4 or 5 years of age, prior to entering grade school. 

Surgery involves a combination of cartilage sculpting, sutures, and skin excision.  For children, the procedure is typically done in the operating room, while for adults, it can be performed in the clinical setting.  A dressing is often worn for a week to prevent manipulation and support molding.

salivary gland disorders

Salivary gland disorders may include infections, obstructions, stones, tumors and possibly cancers. 

The largest salivary glands are the parotid glands which sit in the region between cheek and the ear.  The smaller salivary glands that sit under the jaw are called the submandibular glands.  There are also small salivary glands that line the entire mouth, along the roof of the mouth, inside cheeks, and the back wall of the throat. 

Salivary glands produce saliva when we eat and at rest. Should an obstruction of salivary flow occur, the gland may subsequently swell, become painful and get infected.  Should this happen, salivary flow may be reestablished by means of heating pads, massage, and stimulating the flow of saliva through sialagogues (sour foods or candies). When infection sets in, treatment often requires oral antibiotics.  In severe cases, IV antibiotics may be necessary to clear the infection. 

Tumors may also occur in the salivary glands.  Treatment typically involves removal of the gland for diagnostic as well as treatment purposes.  The majority of tumors involving the parotid and submandibular glands are benign, but malignant tumors of the saliva glands may occur in any of the salivary glands.  Treatment of malignant tumors of the salivary glands may be more complex involving excision of the tumor, removal of lymph nodes and even possible post-treatment radiation.

Thyroid & Vocal Cord Conditions
The thyroid gland, located at the front of the neck, is critical for many basic functions of the human body — it produces hormones which regulate metabolism.

Nodules can develop in the thyroid gland, which are often silent and discovered incidentally, though some are noticed as a lump in the neck, or can cause difficulty swallowing or breathing. Most thyroid nodules are benign, but up to 10% can be malignant (cancerous), requiring biopsy and possibly thyroid surgery.

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Acid Reflux Disease, GERD & LPR

There are two kinds of acid reflux disease — gastroesophageal reflux (GERD) and laryngopharyngeal reflux (LPR).

GERD involves the reflux of stomach acids and gastric contents from the stomach into the esophagus, causing esophageal tissue damage. The primary symptom of GERD is heartburn. LPR involves the reflux of stomach acids higher into the voicebox region or beyond.

Symptoms of LPR vary, but often include chronic cough, the sensation that there is phlegm or something stuck in the throat, chronic sore throat, hoarseness, frequent throat clearing, and difficulty swallowing.

Diagnosis of acid reflux disease is made through a detailed history and physical exam performed by one of our ENT physicians and usually includes close examination of the throat using special camera equipment. Treatment is aimed at controlling production of acid, usually with medication and dietary changes.

Snoring & Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA)

Snoring is the production of sound due to a partial blockage of air flow during sleep. It is not life-threatening, but it can cause significant discomfort, usually in the form of disrupted sleep for the patient and the patient’s spouse or partner.

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Removal of Foreign Body From Ear Or Nose

Foreign bodies of the ear or nose most often involve young children, but can happen to adults as well. Common foreign bodies include rocks, beads, toys, household items, food or candy, cotton Q-tip ends, and even insects. Foreign bodies of the ear or nose should be removed as soon as their presence is discovered, because leaving them inside the body can result in both immediate and long-term health problems.

Our ENT physicians are capable of locating and removing most foreign bodies of the ear and nose in the office. Successful removal depends on various circumstances, including the foreign body’s location, the shape and consistency of the foreign body, and the patient’s cooperation. If the foreign body is particularly troublesome or the patient is particularly uncooperative, the use of a surgical facility and/or surgical procedure may be necessary to successfully remove the foreign body.

Foreign bodies of the throat (known as pharyngeal or tracheal foreign bodies) are generally viewed as medical emergencies, and should addressed as soon as possible.

Nasal Congestion
Nasal congestion, commonly known as a nasal blockage, nasal obstruction, or stuffy nose, results from blockage of the nasal passages. This blockage is usually caused by membranes inside the nose becoming inflamed, resulting in swelling.

Nasal congestion has many causes, and can range widely in severity. At a minimum, it can cause mild or moderate face/head pain and discomfort. However, significant congestion can interfere with sleep routines, cause snoring, and can be associated with sleep apnea.

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Nasal Fracture
A nasal fracture, more commonly referred to as a broken nose, is a fracture of the bones of the nose. Nasal fractures are one of the most common facial injuries, because the nose protrudes from the face and the bones in the nose are fragile.

Nasal fractures are caused by physical trauma to the face, usually from sports injuries, fights, falls, or car accidents. Symptoms include bruising, swelling, tenderness, pain, deformity, and/or bleeding of the nose and nasal region of the face. Breathing may be impaired, and excessive nosebleeds can occur.

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Temporomandibular Joint (TMJ) Conditions

The temporomandibular joint (TMJ) is the joint of the jaw, located directly in front of the ears.

Like any other joint in the human body, it can become inflamed, resulting in significant discomfort in the ear, jaw, neck, head, or over the joint itself.

It is often caused by chronic chewing, teeth grinding, changes in dental bite, a broken and/or repaired jaw, but sometimes can be caused by nothing at all.

Our ENT physicians perform a detailed evaluation to identify and treat TMJ disorders.

Tinnitus (Ringing in the Ears)

Tinnitus, commonly described as ringing in the ears, is an abnormal sensation of sound when there is no actual sound present. Nearly 36 million Americans suffer from tinnitus.

Our audiologists can provide a tinnitus evaluation and fit combination devices such as ReSound Verso TS, and Widex Zen that not only treat hearing loss but also help manage tinnitus.

earlobe repair

For reasons ranging from earring pull through, to elongated earlobe and large earring holes, the earlobes may at times need to be restored to a relatively normal anatomic size.  Recovery is quick, less than 1 week.  However, it is advised not to get your ear pierced or wear earrings following a repair for 6 weeks. This procedure is typically not covered under insurance.

eyelid lift

The eyes are often the first feature people see when you meet them.  Excessive fullness and redundant eyelid skin can make you look older, more tired.  And when severe, it can begin to affect your vision.  When your eyelids begin to cause eye irritation, affect your ability to drive and read, insurance may cover all or a portion of the surgery. 

Eyelid lift surgery involves the removal of excess skin and fat from the upper and/or lower eyelids.  Recovery takes on average 10-14 days for the upper eyelids, and up to 4 weeks for the lower eyelids. 

Eyelid surgery can improve your field of vision.  At the same time, it can result in a brighter, rejuvenated appearance of the eyes. 

skin cancer reconstruction

Skin cancer develops from a history of extensive sun exposure.  Treatment of skin cancer typically involves surgical excision. 

Mohs involves a process of skin cancer excision in the clinic performed by dermatologists that that preserves more tissue than the traditional “frozen” process.  Following excision and clearance of margins, either through Mohs or traditional “frozen” specimens, the subsequent defect may require reconstructive closure. 

When skin cancer occurs on the nose, close to the eyes or mouth, reconstruction should take into consideration the specific anatomy and function of these regions.  The repair of skin cancer defects involves a number of techniques ranging from skin grafts and rotational flaps to ear cartilage and free flaps.  

The purpose of reconstructive surgery following skin cancer excision is to restore function to the affected area and to provide as natural an appearance as possible.

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Our ENT and audiology specialists work to diagnose the cause and severity of your condition and provide the treatment you need to get back to good health.