Coblation Technology

General overview of Coblation Palatoplasties

Millions of Americans suffer from snoring conditions, which in turn also translates into millions of others, such as spouses, having to suffer through the consequences of the condition. This has caused many to suffer poor quality of sleep among other outcomes as a result of the condition. Snoring is caused by the irregular movement of air through the passageway at the throat due to an obstruction. This obstruction is often the soft tissue of the soft palate or the uvula which obstruct the smooth passage of air to the lungs. When someone who snores sleeps, this soft tissue causes the air passing through to do so through a narrow space, which in turn causes the obstructing tissue to vibrate. In some instances, snoring may be accompanied by sleep apnea, a condition where the airway is obstructed altogether and the person stops breathing momentarily while they sleep. In both instances, the condition can be treated through a minimally invasive procedure called coblation palatoplasty

How the service is done:

Coblation palatoplasty is an outpatient procedure performed to reduce snoring. Whereas in the past snoring was treated as an inpatient surgical case, this new form of treatment is minimally invasive and in some cases is performed with only local anesthetic. The procedure involves the reduction in size of the soft tissue causing the snoring. This is achieved by making some small incisions in the soft tissue (soft palate and/or uvula) and then inserting a radio frequency probe that creates a channel within the tissue. The probe is then activated for around ten seconds to cause shrinkage in the tissue. This is repeated in a few other area of the tissue. After the procedure and during the healing process, the tissue scars and shrinks in size causing the overall shrinkage of the soft tissue causing the snoring. When effective, this procedure can reduce significantly or eliminate snoring entirely after a few weeks.

What methods are used:

When you come in these are the steps you will take while undergoing the coblation palatoplasty procedure:

  • Before scheduling the procedure, a nurse practitioner will evaluate you and ensure you can undergo the procedure. They will ask you if you have any allergies, underlying conditions such as diabetes, etc.
  • You will be required to read and sign a medical consent form for the procedure after which you will be booked for surgery.
  • On the day of your procedure you will be given a local anesthetic (plus general anesthesia in some cases) which will numb the back of the mouth;
  • The doctor will then perform the coblation palatoplasty which will take about an hour
  • After this the doctor will monitor you briefly to ensure there is no continuous bleeding.
  • Before discharge you will be given painkillers and a number of things to observe such as gurgling saline water after meals, not eating any hot or spicy foods for a few days, and so on.

Are there any side-effects:

Coblation palatoplasty has a number potential side effects. These include:

  • Before scheduling the procedure, a nurse practitioner will evaluate you and ensure you can undergo the procedure. They will ask you if you have any allergies, underlying conditions such as diabetes, etc.
  • You will be required to read and sign a medical consent form for the procedure after which you will be booked for surgery.
  • On the day of your procedure you will be given a local anesthetic (plus general anesthesia in some cases) which will numb the back of the mouth;
  • The doctor will then perform the coblation palatoplasty which will take about an hour
  • After this the doctor will monitor you briefly to ensure there is no continuous bleeding.
  • Before discharge you will be given painkillers and a number of things to observe such as gurgling saline water after meals, not eating any hot or spicy foods for a few days, and so on.

Follow-up treatments or next steps:

After the procedure you will need to be closely monitored by a responsible adult. This is because in some rare cases bleeding may continue posing a serious threat to the patient. The surgeon will instruct you to take rest for two weeks to allow complete healing although your GP may extend this if healing is not complete. A follow up visit will be slated for six months later to evaluate the success of the procedure. If you are still snoring the procedure may need to be repeated.

Contact Our Office!

Dr. Jahangir Sharifi has a team of experts who operate on patients that need effective coblation palatoplasty. Contact us at (323) 226-0022 for more information.

General overview of the service:

Tonsils are two tissue masses found at the back of the throat that contain similar tissue to lymph nodes found in other areas of the body including the armpits and groin areas. These tissue masses are thought to play a significant role in the immune response of the body during the early years of childhood. Acting as gatekeepers, they trap any germs and bacteria coming into the throat from the nostrils or mouth. Once trapped, the tissue gets infected and triggers the immune system to manufacture antibodies before the infection affects the rest of the body. As time goes by and adulthood commences, these tissue masses play a lesser role in the immune response. Tonsillitis is a condition that affects these tissue masses and is characterized by the frequent infection and inflammation of the tonsils despite the use of antibiotics. This infection causes them to swell resulting in a number of complications such as difficulty swallowing, breathing through the nose, pain, etc. For such, the best course of action is to have them removed, and this can be done through a coblation tonsillectomy.

How the service is done:

Coblation tonsillectomy is an improvement on the more traditional types of tonsillectomies performed in the past. This procedure, instead of using a sharp cutting instrument instead employs coblation technology, a technology that uses tiny electrodes to create a plasma field within a cooling bath of saline water, which dissolves the tissue fastening the tonsils without burning adjacent tissue. As a result, coblation tonsillectomy can be performed as a minimally invasive procedure with minimal bleeding and scarring experienced during and after the procedure.

What methods are used:

When you come in, you will go through the following process:

  • First, you will sit down with the surgeon and they will explain to you what the procedure entails for either you or your child.
  • After a complete understanding, you will need to sign a surgical consent form for the procedure;
  • You will then be instructed on the pre-operation requirements such as not eating or drinking anything 12-24 hours prior to the operation, how to take any medication you are currently on and so on. If your tonsils are infected, you may have to also take some antibiotics prior to the operation.
  • Before the procedure commences, you will be given general anesthesia to out you under The surgeon will then install devices to keep your mouth open.
  • Using the coblation device and some medical tongs, the surgeon will carefully carve out the tonsils and remove them. Owing to the location and physiology of the tonsils, this takes only a few minutes each.
  • After extracting them, the surgeon will deal with any bleeding, although less than a teaspoon of blood is lost in most cases.
  • You will then be wheeled back to the ward to allow the anesthesia to wear off.

Are there any side-effects:

Side effects of coblation tonsillectomy include:

  • Infection and inflammation of the throat
  • Sore throat
  • Bleeding
  • Swelling, which may cause pain while swallowing and a slight change to the voice

Follow-up treatments or next steps:

After the procedure, you will need to avoid any hot or spicy foods for a few days. You may also need to suck on ice as this will reduce the swelling and sooth any inflammation and pain you may have. The prognosis for this procedure is generally good with most patients resuming normal eating after a few hours and going back to work/ school after a few days.

Contact Our Office!

To find out more about our coblation tonsillectomy service, visit L.A. Sinus & Allergy Specialists offices located at 1701 E Cesar Chavez Ave Suite 560, Los Angeles, CA 90033-2425, or book an appointment by calling (323) 226-0022 today.

General overview of the service:

Nasal obstruction is often caused by the enlargement of the inferior turbinate structures. Turbinates are protruding structures within the nasal cavity that warm air as it passes through the nose. Hairs growing on these structures also trap any dust and particles in the air being inhaled. One of the three turbinate structures (superior, middle and inferior turbinate), the inferior turbinates sometimes get enlarged and obstruct the free flow of air into and out of the nose. This causes discomfort, snoring and a general feeling of “stuffiness” in patients. The most effective form of treatment of this condition today involves a turbinoplasty procedure known as coblation turbinoplasty.

How the service is done:

Coblation turbinoplasty is an ENT turbinate reduction that involves the shrinkage of the enlarged turbinates in order to clear the passageway of the nose. Coblation turbinate reduction utilizes a sophisticated radio wave device (more advanced than laser) to cauterize the affected turbinates and cause them to shrink. Performed as an outpatient procedure, coblation turbinoplasty is done under local anesthetic and results in minimal bleeding and often favorable outcomes post-op. The procedure is performed by inserting the coblation probe into the affected turbinate, then activating the device, which causes the tissue to shrink immediately. This is repeated to get maximal results. In many cases the patient can go home only one hour after the operation.

What methods are used:

When you come in, these are the steps you will follow:

  • First, you will discuss the procedure with the surgeon. He will explain to you what it entails, and what you may expect after the procedure.
  • You then need to sign a surgical consent form for the procedure.
  • After this, the nurse practitioner will examine you and interview you to find out if you are allergic to any medications and so on. They will also instruct you on what you need to do to prepare for the procedure.
  • On the day of the procedure you will be given a local anesthesia to numb the area being operated.
  • The surgeon will then use the coblation probe to shrink your turbinates. This usually takes only a couple of minutes.
  • Once complete, they will give you a few minutes to recover, prescribe for you some painkillers and discharge you.

Are there any side-effects:

Side effects from coblation turbinoplasty include:

  • Turbinoplasty complications such as infection, inflammation and swelling,
  • The mucosal surface of the turbinates may be compromised resulting in poor conditioning of air flowing through the nose
  • If the turbinates shrink too much, this will result in less turbulent air, which will then produce a sense of blockage even if the cavity is clear.
  • Some crusting and dryness of the nose may occur for the first few weeks but this resolves after some time.

Follow-up treatments or next steps:

The prognosis for this procedure is usually favorable and most patients go on to have a complication-free turbinoplasty recovery. Owing to the minimally invasive nature of the procedure, there is little to no bleeding, hence little wound management is required. The surgeon may schedule you for a follow up appointment to examine you and determine if the procedure was indeed successful in clearing your nasal airway.

Contact Our Office!

To find out more about our coblation turbinoplasty service, visit L.A. Sinus & Allergy Specialists offices located at 1701 E Cesar Chavez Ave Suite 560, Los Angeles, CA 90033-2425, or book an appointment by calling (323) 226-0022 today.