July 01, 2012

Guns n' Roses Rocker Duff McKagan Underwent Sinus Surgery

Duff McKagan, the bassist of Guns n' Roses, apparently underwent sinus surgery back in December 2010.

According to media reports, his sinus cavities developed significant scar tissue due to years of cocaine abuse.

Sinus surgery due to scar tissue is a relatively rare indication for surgery, but required if they block sinus cavities leading to recurrent sinus infections.

Cocaine abuse more typically causes other sino-nasal abnormalities especially septal perforation.

Exactly what type of sinus surgery Duff McKagan underwent is unclear, but for sinus scar tissue, balloon sinuplasty is typically the route taken and can be performed in the office.

Balloon sinuplasty is when the sinus openings are enlarged using a balloon and can potentially be performed in the office assuming no anatomic contraindications (significant deviated septum, nasal polyps, etc).

However, before sinus surgery is considered in a patient who is suffering from recurrent sinus infections whether scar tissue is present or not, a workup is typically required followed by maximal medical management.

A typical workup includes a CT sinus scan, allergy testing, and nasal endoscopy. If allergy testing is significant, aggressive allergy management is required prior to surgical consideration.

Depending on the CT scan and endoscopic findings, there are two "flavors" of sinus surgery: traditional and balloon sinuplasty.

Traditional sinus surgery, otherwise known as functional endoscopic sinus surgery, is when all sinus disease is physically removed endoscopically from the nose and sinus entrances are enlarged.

Duff McKagan explains sinus surgery. SFGate 12/17/10
Fauquier blog
Fauquier ENT

Dr. Christopher Chang is a private practice otolaryngology, head & neck surgeon specializing in the treatment of problems related to the ear, nose, and throat. Located in Warrenton, VA about 45 minutes west of Washington DC, he also provides inhalant allergy testing/treatment, hearing tests, and dispenses hearing aids.

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