Purpose of review
The purpose of the review is to evaluate the current indications and contraindications for balloon sinuplasty and review the clinical trials performed in this area.
The indications for balloon sinus dilatation are somewhat similar to those for endoscopic sinus surgery. Balloon sinus ostial dilation (BSD) has been found to be most effective in the treatment of recurrent acute sinusitis (RARS) and chronic rhinosinusitis without nasal polyposis (CRSsNP) that has been refractory to medical therapy. Multiple randomized clinical trials have demonstrated the efficacy of BSD in improving quality-of-life outcomes in patients with limited CRSsNP in both the clinic and operating room settings. However, because BSD merely dilates blocked sinusal ostia without removing tissue, it is typically restricted to addressing disorder involving the frontal, sphenoid, and maxillary sinuses. Individuals who have significant disease of the ethmoid sinus may have BSD adjunctively with endoscopic sinus surgery. BSD is unsuitable as a primary treatment modality in pansinus polyposis, widespread fungal sinusitis, connective tissue disorders at an advanced stage, or potential malignancy. A recent expert clinical consensus statement also concluded that BSD is not appropriate for treatment of patients with headache that do not meet the diagnostic criteria for CRS or RARS or patients who do not have both positive findings of sinus disease on computed tomography and sinonasal symptoms.
Balloon sinuplasty is an option in the treatment of sinusitis that has failed appropriate medical therapy. Evidence is best for limited disease in patients with CRSsNP affecting the frontal, sphenoid, and maxillary sinuses. Because BSD can be performed in the office setting, it can be a viable therapeutic alternative in patients with comorbidities who are unable to tolerate general anesthesia.