Sinus and Nasal Disorders

Sinus and Nasal Disorders

Chronic Sinusitis, Sinus Infections, and Other Concerns

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Whether you suffer from chronic congestion, facial pressure, difficulty breathing through your nose, or a diminished sense of smell, Duke’s ear, nose, and throat (ENT) doctors can help. We offer advanced care for a range of sinus and nasal problems.

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About Sinus and Nasal Disorders

Common Sinus and Nasal Disorders
Our ENTs can offer treatment to relieve:

  • Chronic sinusitis (sinus inflammation), which is often accompanied by small, benign growths inside the nose or sinuses called nasal polyps
  • Repeat sinus infections
  • Nasal allergies
  • Deviated septum (misalignment of the nasal wall)

More Complex Nasal and Sinus Conditions Treated by Sinus Specialists
In addition to treating more common sinus problems, Duke’s sinus specialists have advanced training and experience in treating rare and complicated conditions such as:

  • Nasal or sinus tumors (types of skull base tumors)
  • Sinusitis caused by autoimmune conditions such as sarcoidosis
  • Cystic fibrosis, which can cause lifelong sinus problems

Our sinus specialists can recommend and perform surgeries that can bring you rapid relief and vastly improve your quality of life. 


Intranasal (administered within the nose) and oral steroids, antibiotics, and allergy medications can help reduce sinus inflammation and related symptoms. 

Our ENT doctors and sinus specialists also offer several minimally invasive procedures to address the source of these symptoms. These outpatient procedures are often performed in your doctor’s office using local anesthesia, high-definition video endoscopy (a small, high-resolution telescope with a light), and specialized instruments passed through the nose. A sophisticated image-guidance system serves as a “GPS” device, allowing surgeons to perform safe and thorough surgery with less pain. Nasal packing is almost never used, and you can return to normal activities within a few days.

Drug-Eluting Sinus Stents

A small, flexible applicator is threaded through the nose into the sinus cavity. A scaffold-like device is placed to prop open the sinuses and release an anti-inflammatory medication that reduces polyp formation and promotes healing.

Nasal Polypectomy

Polyps that obstruct your nasal passages or sinuses are removed. For people who have recurrent polyps, thorough surgery with appropriate postoperative medications will minimize the risk of your polyps growing back.

Balloon Sinuplasty

Using a catheter, a small balloon is inflated inside your nose to expand sinus passages, improve drainage, and provide long-lasting relief of sinus pressure and congestion. 


Straightens a deviated septum. After the procedure, people typically notice improved breathing and almost immediate relief from chronic nasal obstruction.

Turbinate Reduction Surgery

Turbinectomy reduces the size of larger-than-normal bony structures (turbinates) in the nose that humidify and filter air. The improvement in breathing is almost immediate.

Nasal Implants

A small, Y-shaped rod is inserted just under the skin along your nostril to support the nasal wall and reduce nasal obstruction. The implant is absorbed over the next 18 months, but the benefits can be felt long after that.

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Duke Health offers locations throughout the Triangle. Find one near you.


Nasal Endoscopy

An endoscope is passed through your nose to allow doctors to view your nasal passages, sinuses, and throat. It is performed with a local anesthetic and is virtually painless.

Allergy Skin Testing

Your skin is gently pricked and exposed to tiny amounts of various allergens (for example, mold, pollen, or pet dander). Raised or red bumps indicate which substances trigger your symptoms. Depending on your results, you may be eligible for immunotherapy, which consists of either allergy shots or oral tablets.

Imaging Scans

CT or MRI scans help ENT doctors visualize your internal nasal and sinus structures and check for swelling, infection, and other problems. These images can help your doctor determine the cause of your symptoms and which treatments will provide relief.

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Why Choose Duke

Advanced Care
We offer the latest nonsurgical therapies as well as highly effective, minimally invasive office procedures to safely clear clogged sinuses, heal chronic infection, and help you breathe easier. Several of the treatments we offer require advanced training and skill and are not widely available.

Latest Technologies
We use drug-eluting stents and implants to treat sinus and nasal disorders; balloon dilation of the sinuses; and stereotactic computer navigation for safe, precise, and thorough sinus surgery. We evaluate your needs and recommend the most effective treatment.

Experts with Advanced Training
Your care team includes ENT doctors and sinus specialists (ENT doctors with additional training in complex diseases of the nose and sinuses) who work closely with allergists, pulmonologists (doctors specializing in lung diseases), speech and voice therapists, and any other specialists across Duke Health that you may need. Our team approach leads to excellent outcomes.

Local and Regional Referral Center
People with complex sinus and nasal disorders are referred to Duke from far and wide. We provide treatment options that are not available everywhere, and we take pride in giving people the relief they need.

Duke University Hospital is nationally ranked in 10 adult specialties
Consistently Ranked Among the Nation’s Best Hospitals
In addition, Duke University Hospital is proud to be named the best hospital in North Carolina, and nationally ranked in 10 adult and 9 pediatric specialties by U.S. News & World Report for 2019–2020.
Reviewed: 11/04/2019