Balloon dilation is a minimally invasive procedure which addresses narrowing of the airway, throat and esophagus. This procedure is performed with the patient awake without need for an IV.

Patients with subglottic stenosis, tracheal stenosis, and esophageal stenosis may be candidates for an in-office dilation. Initially endoscopy is performed to assess the degree and type of narrowing. A patient’s nasal cavity, throat and airway is numbed using topical anesthetics such as lidocaine. The balloon is then inflated and expands the stenotic area. Typically the balloon sits inflated for one-three minutes.

Balloon Dilation - Voice and Swallowing Doctor - Sunil Verma MD
Balloon placed through an area of narrowing in the trachea. It is then inflated to widen the narrowed area.

An endoscope is inserted through the nose and advanced to the area of narrowing. A deflated balloon is advanced through the stenosis. Controlled expansion of the balloon is performed, with a view via the endoscope used to confirm expansion. Often two or three expansions are performed at one setting to serially increase the size of the narrowing.

For those who are not candidates for in-office balloon dilation, similar procedures can be performed in the operating room with the patient asleep.

Today, in the 21st century, improvements in anesthesia medication and delivery, and state of the art imaging products using high-defintion technology allow for examination of the larynx in ways never before possible. This along with small lasers and improved equipment allow laryngologists to perform surgeries in office that once required general anesthesia. This is one of the most exciting advancements in all of medicine over the last ten years.

Dr-Verma - Voice and Swallowing Doctor - Sunil Verma MD is an online resource for patients and physicians to learn more about common voice, swallowing, breathing and throat disorders. Throat complaints, from cough to cancer, are a common reason for patients to seek medical treatment. This website developed as a result of Dr. Sunil Verma's passions: that of education, patient care, and interest in technology.

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NOTE : The information presented on this site is for educational purposes only, and is not intended to replace consultation with a qualified physician. It may not be appropriate to your individual case, and should not be used in making treatment decisions, especially with regard to medication. Considerable effort is made to ensure that the information on this site is accurate, but medicine is a changing field, and this website is not responsible for errors or omissions. Use of this website acknowledges the above.

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