Helena Ear, Nose, & Throat Clinic is proud to offer these services:
Allergy drop treatment can help you safely, effectively, and conveniently treat the cause of your allergies.
Allergy drops work similar to allergy shots by delivering a slowly increasing dose of physician-prescribed antigen that builds the body’s tolerance to the allergens that cause your allergy symptoms. The difference is that the drops are placed under the tongue and affect the immune system through very specialized cells found there. Research shows these cells are a friendlier and more effective route for long-term tolerance, making it ideal for people who can’t tolerate or don’t respond to allergy shots. Treatment for most patients lasts between three to five years, depending upon severity of allergies and patient compliance.
Aside from being able to treat more patients, there are other advantages to allergy drops:
Lower cost, fewer clinic visits. Allergy drops are affordable and require few clinic visits after your initial testing – typically only a few clinic visits the first year, and once every 6-12 months thereafter until visits are no longer needed depending upon the severity of your allergies.
More convenient, fewer medications. You can take allergy drops at home or wherever you need to be, making it much easier to stay with treatment. Most patients find they need less medication to control symptoms after beginning allergy drops.
More healthy days. The end benefit is simply feeling better. Patients typically report fewer clinic visits and hospitalizations for allergy-related issues, and less time lost from work and school, after taking drops consistently.
Although most people who suffer from allergies and related illnesses can benefit from allergy drops, they are especially helpful for people who can’t tolerate or don’t respond to allergy shots, including:
*Allergy drops have proven especially helpful for children with eczema and recurrent ear infections, which often have underlying allergic causes. Research shows that many children with untreated eczema and allergies often develop asthma and other chronic conditions later in life, so treating them early can have life-long benefits.
Allergy drops have been used around the world for more than 60 years, and many studies show that allergy drops are safe and effective. Dosing levels and the route of administration are safe enough to effectively treat infants, children, and people suffering from chronic conditions that previously made them unable to receive immunotherapy via shots.
In fact, the World Health Organization had endorsed sublingual immunotherapy as a viable alternative to injection therapy.
Research shows that allergy drops are safer than allergy shots, and that reactions occur less. For more information about research studies, visit www.allergychoices.com/bibliography.
Balloon Sinuplasty (BSP) is a safe and effective procedure for chronic sinusitis patients who are not responding well to medications and are seeking relief from uncomfortable and painful sinusitis symptoms.
If you have been diagnosed with chronic sinusitis and are not responding well to medication, you may be a candidate for sinus surgery. There is now a less invasive option used by Dr. Pargot to treat chronic sinusitis patients that is clinically proven to be safe, effective and improve the quality of your life.
With Balloon Sinuplasty, Dr. Pargot will open inflamed sinuses in the same way that heart surgeons open up blocked arteries during balloon angioplasty. The procedure is less invasive than traditional sinus surgery, and effective at relieving symptoms of chronic sinusitis. Balloon Sinuplasty allows patients to return to normal activities quickly. Unlike conventional sinus surgery, it does not include removal of bone or tissue from the nose. In many cases, Balloon Sinuplasty can be done in the office under local anesthesia, so that there is no need to go to an operating room or undergo general anesthesia.
Endoscopic sinus surgery – also called endoscopy or sinoscopy – is a procedure used to remove blockages in the sinuses (the spaces filled with air in some of the bones of the skull). These blockages cause sinusitis, a condition in which the sinuses swell and become clogged, causing pain and impaired breathing.
A thin, lighted instrument called an endoscope is inserted into the nose, and the doctor looks inside through an eyepiece. Much like a telescope with a wide-angle camera lens, the endoscope beams light into different parts of the nose and sinuses, allowing the doctor to see what is causing blockages. Surgical instruments can then be used along with the endoscope to remove the blockages and improve breathing.
This surgery does not involve cutting through the skin, as it is performed entirely through the nostrils, and most people can go home the same day.
Endoscopic sinus surgery can:
Endoscopic sinus surgery is an effective procedure to correct:
However, it seems to be less effective for those with post-nasal drip or allergies that are caused by airborne particles which cannot be avoided, such as dust and ragweed.
Facts about endoscopic sinus surgery
The tonsils and adenoids are masses of immune cells commonly found in lymph glands (lymphoid tissue). These tissues are located in the mouth and behind the nasal passages, respectively. Each are thought to aid in fighting infection.
Infected or enlarged tonsils may cause chronic or recurrent sore throat, bad breath, dental malocclusion, abscess, upper airway obstruction causing difficulty with swallowing, snoring, or sleep apnea. Infected adenoids may become enlarged, obstruct breathing, cause ear infections or other problems. Tonsillectomy and adenoidectomy are surgical procedures performed to remove the tonsils and adenoids.
Many kids get middle ear infections(otitis media, or OM), usually between the ages of 6 months and 2 years.
Some kids are particularly susceptible because of environmental and lifestyle factors (like attendance at a group childcare, secondhand tobacco smoke exposure, and taking a bottle to bed).
Although these infections are relatively easy to treat, a child who has multiple ear infections that do not get better easily or has evidence of hearing loss or speech delay may be a candidate for ear tube surgery.
During this surgery, small tubes are placed in the eardrums to ventilate the area behind the eardrum and keep the pressure equalized to atmospheric pressure in the middle ear.
The middle ear is an air-filled cavity located behind the eardrum. When sound enters the ear, it makes the eardrum vibrate, which in turn makes tiny bones in the middle ear vibrate. This transmits sound signals to the inner ear, where nerves relay the signals to the brain.
A small passage leading from the middle ear to the back of the nose — called the eustachian tube — equalizes the air pressure between the middle ear and the outside world. (When your ears pop while yawning or swallowing, the eustachian tubes are adjusting the air pressure in the middle ears.)
Bacteria or viruses can enter the middle ear through the eustachian tube and cause an infection — this often occurs when a child has had a cold or other respiratory infection. When the middle ear becomes infected, it may fill with fluid or pus, particularly if the infection is bacterial.
Pressure from this buildup pushes on the eardrum and causes pain, and because the eardrum cannot vibrate, the child may experience a temporary decrease in hearing.
With treatment, a bacterial infection can be quickly cleared up. In most kids the fluid will resolve over time and hearing will be restored. Some research suggests that long periods of hearing loss in young children can lead to delays in speech development and learning.
Thyroid surgery is used to treat thyroid nodules, thyroid cancer, and hyperthyroidism. During this procedure, part or all of the thyroid gland is removed. The thyroid gland is a butterfly-shaped gland located at the front of the neck.
During surgery, an incision is made in the skin.The muscle and other tissues are pulled aside to expose the thyroid gland.
Many people leave the hospital a day or two after surgery. How much time you spend in the hospital and how fast you recover depend on your age and general health, the extent of the surgery, and whether cancer is present.
Surgery is rarely used to treat hyperthyroidism. It may be used if the thyroid gland is so big that it makes swallowing or breathing difficult or thyroid cancer has been diagnosed or is suspected. Surgery also may be done if you are pregnant or cannot tolerate antithyroid medicines.
You may have all or part of your thyroid gland removed, depending on the reason for the surgery.
Signs and symptoms may include:
Make an appointment with Dr. Pargot if you have any persistent signs and symptoms that bother you and last more than two weeks.
Frequent, loud snoring may be a sign of sleep apnea, a common and potentially serious disorder in which breathing repeatedly stops and starts as you sleep. Although sleep apnea is treatable, it often goes unrecognized. Learning how to identify the warning signs, how to distinguish it from normal snoring, is the first step to overcoming sleep apnea and getting a good night’s sleep.
In untreated sleep apnea, breathing is briefly interrupted or becomes very shallow during sleep. These breathing pauses typically last between 10 to 20 seconds and can occur up to hundreds of times a night, jolting you out of your natural sleep rhythm. As a consequence, you spend more time in light sleep and less time in the deep, restorative sleep you need to be energetic, mentally sharp, and productive the next day.
This chronic sleep deprivation results in daytime sleepiness, slow reflexes, poor concentration, and an increased risk of accidents. Sleep apnea can also lead to serious health problems over time, including diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease, stroke, and weight gain. But with treatment you can control the symptoms, get your sleep back on track, and start enjoy being refreshed and alert every day.
Sleep apnea can be a potentially serious disorder, so contact Dr. Pargot immediately if you spot the warning signs. An official diagnosis of sleep apnea may require seeing a sleep specialist and taking a home-based sleep test using a portable monitor, or an overnight stay at a sleep clinic.
Not everyone who snores has sleep apnea, and not everyone who has sleep apnea snores. So how do you tell the difference between normal snoring and a more serious case of sleep apnea?
The biggest telltale sign is how you feel during the day. Normal snoring doesn’t interfere with the quality of your sleep as much as sleep apnea does, so you’re less likely to suffer from extreme fatigue and sleepiness during the day.
Even if you don’t have sleep apnea, a snoring problem can get in the way of your bed partner’s rest and affect your own sleep quality and health. But there are plenty of tips and treatments that can help.
The following strategies can help you decipher the symptoms:
Anyone can have sleep apnea—young, old, male, female, and even children. However, certain risk factors have been associated with obstructive and central sleep apnea.
You have a higher risk for obstructive sleep apnea if you are:
Other risk factors for obstructive sleep apnea include certain physical attributes, such as having a thick neck, deviated septum, receding chin, or enlarged tonsils or adenoids (the most common cause of sleep apnea in children). Your airway may be blocked or narrowed during sleep simply because your throat muscles tend to relax more than normal. Allergies or other medical conditions that cause nasal congestion and blockage can also contribute to sleep apnea.
Lots of people are intimately familiar with acid reflux symptoms. More than 60 million Americans experience acid reflux at least once a month. Acid reflux disease, also known as gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) can produce a variety of symptoms.
Common Acid Reflux Symptoms include heartburn, regurgitation, and dyspepsia.
Heartburn. Also called acid indigestion, heartburn is a burning painor discomfort that can move up from your stomach to the middle of your abdomen and chest. The pain can also move into your throat. Despite its name, heartburn doesn’t affect your heart.
Regurgitation. Another common symptom of acid reflux is regurgitation — or the sensation of acid backing up into your throat or mouth. Regurgitation can produce a sour or bitter taste, and you may experience a “wet burp” or even vomit some contents of your stomach.
Dyspepsia. Many people with acid reflux disease also have a syndrome called dyspepsia. Dyspepsia is a general term for stomach discomfort. Symptoms of dyspepsia include:
Symptoms of acid reflux may be a sign that stomach acid has inflamed your esophagus. When that happens, stomach acid can damage the lining of your esophagus and cause bleeding.
Although acid reflux is extremely common and rarely serious, don’t ignore your acid reflux symptoms. Making a few lifestyle changes and using over-the-counter antacids usually are all you need to control acid reflux symptoms.
Acid reflux symptoms most often occur:
People who have frequent acid reflux symptoms most often experience them at night. Nighttime GERD also produces the most pain. However, the level of pain does not always indicate the degree of damage to your esophagus.
More than half of all pregnant women experience heartburn during pregnancy. Increased hormones and pressure from a growing fetus can combine to produce this acid reflux symptom. In most cases, heartburn goes away after delivery.
Certain foods can make the symptoms of acid reflux worse. To lessen your symptoms, try avoiding:
Usually, acid reflux symptoms cause no complications. In a few cases, continued esophageal damage can lead to scarring, which may cause the esophagus to narrow. The narrowing creates strictures and makes it difficult to swallow. You may have dysphagia, a sensation that food is stuck in your esophagus. In some cases, cells in the lining of the esophagus develop an abnormal shape and color in response to the constant acid irritation. If you are experiencing this, make an appointment with Dr. Pargot today.
Meniere’s disease is a disorder of the inner ear that causes spontaneous episodes of vertigo — a sensation of a spinning motion — along with fluctuating hearing loss, ringing in the ear (tinnitus), and sometimes a feeling of fullness or pressure in your ear. In many cases, Meniere’s disease affects only one ear.
People in their 40s and 50s are more likely than people in other age groups to develop Meniere’s disease, but it can occur in anyone, even children.
Although Meniere’s disease is considered a chronic condition, various treatment strategies can help relieve symptoms and minimize the disease’s long-term impact on your life.
The primary signs and symptoms of Meniere’s disease are:
A typical episode might start with a feeling of fullness in your ear, increasing tinnitus and decreasing hearing followed by severe vertigo, often accompanied by nausea and vomiting. Such an episode might last 20 minutes to four hours, after which signs and symptoms improve. Episodes often occur in clusters, with long periods of mild or no symptoms (remission) between.
Still, the severity, frequency and duration of each of these sensory perception problems vary, especially early in the disease. For example, you could have frequent episodes with severe vertigo and only mild disturbances in other sensations. Or you may experience mild vertigo and hearing loss infrequently but have frequent tinnitus that disturbs your sleep.
See Dr. Pargot if you experience any signs or symptoms of Meniere’s disease. Because any one of these problems may be the result of other illnesses, it’s important to get an accurate diagnosis as soon as possible.
Dizziness is the feeling of being lightheaded, woozy, or unbalanced. It affects the sensory organs, specifically eyes and ears. It can cause fainting. Dizziness is not a disease but a symptom of other disorders.
Vertigo and disequilibrium may cause a feeling of dizziness, but those two terms describe different symptoms. Vertigo is characterized by a feeling of spinning. Disequilibrium is a loss of balance or equilibrium. True dizziness is the feeling of lightheadedness or nearly fainting.
Dizziness is common. The underlying cause of dizziness is usually not serious. Occasional dizziness is nothing to worry about.
Seek medical attention if you have recurring bouts of dizziness with no apparent cause. Also seek immediate help if you experience sudden dizziness along with a head injury, a headache, neck ache, blurred vision, hearing loss, a loss of motor ability, a loss of consciousness, or chest pain. These could indicate serious issues.
Botulinum toxin, commonly referred to as Botox, is a prescription medicine that is injected into the muscles and used to temporarily improve the look of moderate to severe frown lines between the eyebrows as well as the side of the eyes to improve the look of moderate to severe crow’s feet in men and women ages 18-65. Speak with Dr. Pargot and his staff to see if you are a good candidate for Botox Cosmetic injections.