This post is literally about going up my nose; well actually into my sinuses. Last June I started to get headaches everyday. After an exhausting experience convincing my doctor that there was really something wrong with me, she sent me for a sinus CT scan. At the discovery of all of my sinus cavities being nearly 100% impacted, I was (finally) referred to an Ears, Nose and Throat (ENT) doctor. It took nearly two month to get the referral, and then another 4 weeks to get an appointment.
By early November, I was in for sinus surgery. The procedure was nearly four hours. The goal was to open up the drainage ways so the mucus getting stuck in my sinuses would drain better. My sinuses are really affected by having CF. I just always feel stuffed up and I cannot smell scents very well. While that is still the case, the surgery really helped, at least in terms of the headaches. Although I still had headaches after the surgery, I have been headache free since March. Suppressing the headaches was due to not just the surgery, but finding the right maintenance for my sinuses, post-surgery. This includes sinus rinses twice a day. Every-other-month, I mix an antibiotic (TOBI)into the rinse. I think this has been key to keeping things in order.
I also go in for a check up once a month with the ENT. I just went in about a week ago. Recently he invested in a technology that allows the patient to see the sinuses as he is performing the examination. He uses a scope with a camera on it, puts it up the nose (way up the nose) and the image is displayed on a screen. During my last visit, I took a picture of the screen showing my sinus cavity. The pic is included below. You can see where the mucus is getting stuck still. But between the success of the surgery and keeping up with the rinses, it is moving through my system, as opposed to sticking there, causing an infection, followed by inflammation, and leading to a headache. I'm so glad to be feeling better, but it was a long road to get there.