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Quantification of airflow in the sinuses following functional endoscopic sinus surgery

Volume: 58 - Issue: 3

Firstpage: 257 - Lastpage: 265

J. Siu - J. Dong - K. Inthavong - Y. Shang - R.G. Douglas

BACKGROUND: Despite functional endoscopic sinus surgery (FESS) being the standard of care in medically recalcitrant chronic rhinosinusitis (CRS), its effect on sinus ventilation has not been fully characterized. Airflow simulations can help improve our understanding of how surgical strategies affect post-surgical sinus ventilation.
METHODS: Eight postoperative sinonasal cavity models were reconstructed from a wide spectrum of CRS patients who had undergone FESS. Computational fluid dynamics modeling of steady-state, laminar, inspiratory airflow was performed. Ventilation was quantified and observed for all the sinuses in each model.
RESULTS: Sinus aeration was enhanced following FESS, particularly in the maxillary and ethmoid sinuses. The degree of improvement was related to the extent of surgery performed. This finding was accentuated at a higher inhalational flow rate of 15L/min. The relationship between ostium size and corresponding sinus inflow was stronger for the maxillary and sphenoid sinuses. Maxillary inflow reached 50% in a mega-antrostomy patient, while negligible flow occurred in the frontal sinuses for except one whom had undergone a modified Lothrop procedure.
CONCLUSIONS: This study has quantified sinus airflow in the largest set of post-FESS patients to date, to show that with increasing extensive surgery, the sinus and nasal cavity become more interconnected and functionally interdependent. Accordingly, sinus ventilation is improved. This may have important consequences for pre- and post-surgical assessment and planning, and on predicting how drug delivery treatments and devices can be designed to target the postoperative sinuses.

J. Siu - J. Dong - K. Inthavong - Y. Shang - R.G. Douglas - Quantification of airflow in the sinuses following functional endoscopic sinus surgery
Rhinology 58-3: 257-265, 2020