Ear, Nose & Throat Care
Specializing in treating disorders of the ear, nose & throat. Skilled in the latest surgical advancements for head and neck surgery.
Ear, Nose and Throat (ENT)
What is an ENT doctor?
An ear, nose and throat specialist (ENT) is a physician trained in the medical and surgical treatment of the ears, nose throat, and related structures of the head and neck. They have special expertise in managing diseases of the ears, nose and nasal passage sinuses, larynx (voice box), oral cavity and upper pharynx (mouth and throat), as well as structures of the neck and face. ENT is the oldest medical specialty in the United States.
Diseases of the Ear
The ear allows us to hear and maintain balance. It is made up of the inner ear, the middle ear and the outer ear. Each of these areas delicate and vulnerable to infections and damage.
Otitis Externa (Swimmer's Ear)
Otitis Externa is an infection in the outer ear canal.
- Using q-tips or any other object that may damage the lining of your ear canal allowing bacteria to reside inside
- Excess moisture stagnant inside of the ear
Otitis Media is a bacterial or viral infection of the middle ear.
Causes: Most often is a result of another illness that causes swelling of the nasal passages.
Perforation of the Ear
More commonly known as a ruptured eardrum. This occurs when a puncture or a hole is present in the eardrum
The most common causes include an ear infection and poking the eardrum with a foreigh object, mainly a q-tip.
Symptoms include: dizziness, changes in your hearing, fluid draining from the ear or tinnitus.
In most cases, treatment is not necessary, as a ruptured eardrum typically heals within a three month period. Although, if an ear infection is present, your doctor may prescribe you antibiotics to treat the existing condition.
An acoustic neuroma, also known as a vestibular schwannoma, is a rare, benign tumor.
Otosclerosis is a disorder in which there is an overgrowth of bone in the space behind the eardrum and the inner ear. Symptoms include hearing loss or tinnitis. In some cases, vertigo may occur.
Treatment options include hearing aids and/or surgery that allows the bones of the ear freely vibrate.
A cholesteatoma is an abnormal, non-cancerous skin growth. Most commonly caused by chronic middle ear infections.
Symptoms include an aching pain behind the ear, hearing loss, and vertigo. In most cases, surgery is the recommended treatment.
Meniere’s Disease is a disorder of the ear (usually only one) that causes vertigo, tinnitus, and hearing loss.
Treatment options differ, but may include prescriptions, injections, dietary changes and surgery.
Persistent Ear Noise (Tinnitus)
Tinnitus (ringing in the ears) is the perception of noise when there is not any noise present.
Treatments will differ depending on the severity. These may include hearing aids, medications, counseling and cochlear implants.
Sinusitis is an inflammation of the sinus lining.
Symptoms may include stuffy or runny nose, cough, congestion, loss of smell, fever, bad breath, fatigue, or pus in nasal cavity.
Acute & Chronic Sinusitis
Acute (acute rhinosinusitis) –short-term inflammation of your sinus lining.
Chronic –Usually a malfunction, caused by fungal antigens, of the immune system.
Symptoms may include asthma, loss of smell, postnasal drip, pain in your ears, sinus headaches, sore throat, exhaustion, and halitosis.
- Nasal Steroid Sprays
- Oral and Nasal Decongestants
- Oral and Injectable Steroids
- Balloon Sinuplasty (outpatient and in office)
A deviated septum is a condition where the nasal septum is significantly off center, resulting in breathing difficulty.
Some of the most common symptoms include: nasal congestion, headaches, nosebleeds, facial pain, postnasal drip, and loud breathing during sleep. Some cases may also cause sleep apnea and/or chronic sinus infections.
Treatments may include rhinoplasty (nose job), sinus surgery, balloon sinuplasty.
Tonsillitis and Adenoiditis
Tonsillitis is the result of the tonsils becoming infected.
Symptoms may include bacterial infections, viral infections, most commonly Streptococcus. Other symptoms include pain or tenderness in the throat, red tonsils, headache, ear pain, difficulty swallowing, swollen glands and bad breath.
If caused by a bacterial infection, antibiotics will be prescribed. In the event of a viral infection, treatment may include getting enough rest, using a vaporizer, gargle with warm salt water and lozenges.
If tonsillitis is recurrent, surgery may be required to remove the tonsils.
Pharyngitis (sore throat)
Types: bacterial and viral
Symptoms: fever, sore throat, pain when swallowing, lymph node swelling
More serious symptoms: loss of appetite, vomiting, fatigue, and nausea
Treatment: A bacterial infection can be treated with antibiotics. For viral infections, rest, drinking warm fluids, throat lozenges, and gargling warm salt water can help.
Laryngitis is an inflammation of the voice box caused by many factors, including viral infections or irritation.
Types: Acute laryngitis is a temporary condition that may be caused by viral or bacterial infections, overuse, straining the vocal cords, or drinking too much alcohol.
Chronic laryngitis is usually more severe and has long-lasting effects. It may be caused by gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), frequent sinus infections, smoking, etc.
Prevention: wash hands to avoid catching a cold, avoid smoking, distance yourself from those who do smoke, avoid excessive clearing your throat, avoid foods that may cause heartburn, and limit your alcohol intake.
Hoarseness is an abnormal change in your voice and may cause difficulty when speaking due to a dry, scratchy throat.
Dysphagia (difficulty swallowing)
Dysphagia can be caused by other medical conditions (stroke, Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s, etc.) that impair structure, strength (muscle weakness), and coordination of the throat while swallowing
Symptoms: Difficulty chewing, food residue in mouth after swallowing, regularly coughing or clearing throat, loss of fluids out of the mouth, holding food in mouth and initiating a swallow
Vocal Cord Paralysis
Vocal Cord Paralysis is the weakening of one or both vocal folds.
Symptoms: vocal fatigue, pain while speaking, hoarseness, reduction in vocal volume, difficulty speaking or swallowing, and shortness of breath
Esophageal Reflux is caused when stomach contents re-enter the esophagus after meals. This can also be called acid reflux.
Causes: Dietary factors (high fat diet, smoking, dinner before bed, obesity), stress, consistent alcohol consumption, family history
Symptoms: heartburn, regurgitation, bloating, nausea, stomach pain, gas, asthma, trouble swallowing, sore throat, excessive cough (dry cough), sudden increase in saliva/bad breath, ear aches
Oral lesions are typically caused by viral infections, fungal infections or minor injuries to the mouth or lips.
While most of the common forms of oral lesions do not require you to seek medical attention, they can be painful and sometimes embarassing. Available treatments include prescription medication, ointments and even some home remedies.
Laryngeal Cancer, also known as throat cancer, is caused mainly by smoking and drinking alcohol. This is a rare cancer in which malignant cells grow in the larynx (voice box).
Symptoms include: changes in your voice, swallowing becomes difficult (dysphagia), cough or shortness of breath, weightloss, a feeling as if there is a lump in your throat and halitosis.
Treatments include: radiation therapy, surgery, chemotherapy, chemoprevention.
Tongue tie, also called ankyloglossia, is a condition present at birth in which the tongue’s range of motion is restricted.
Symptoms include: difficulty moving tongue side to side or difficulty in sticking out the tongue past the teeth.
The condition often resolves itself but more severe cases may be treated with surgery.
Smell and Taste Disorders
- Anosmia is an inability to smell.
- Hyposmia is a reduced ability to smell and to detect odors.
- Hyperosmia is an increased ability to smell.
- Dysosmia is difficulty identifying smells. There are three types:
- Parosmia is an distorted recognition of smell in the presence of an odor.
- Phantosmia is the awareness of smell without an odor present
- Agnosia is the inability to identify odors, although able to detect odors.
- Ageusia is the inability to taste.
- Hypogeusia is a reduced ability to taste.
- Dysgeusia is a distorted ability to taste.
The parotid gland is located near the ear in the upper portion of each cheek.
Salivary Gland Disorders
There are three major salivary glands which make saliva; parotid, submandibular and sublingual. In addition, 600 to 1,000 minor salivary glands are scattered throughout the mouth and throat.
Disorders include: sialadenitis, sialothisiasis, sialectasis, and sialadenosis.
Causes may be due to infection, inflammation, obstruction or tumors.