Catarrh treatment from the ENT Laser Surgery
Catarrh is a widely used descriptive term for build-up of mucus, typically at the back of the nose, a throat clearing sensation, or the feeling of lumpyness, something stuck, at the back of the tongue. Some people experience a catarrh in throat lump for months or years. We offer catarrh treatment, whether using medicines, or sometimes laser treatment. Find out about laser catarrh treatment here, contact us for an appointment or read of Catarrh FAQs for more information.
Symptoms of catarrh
The symptom of catarrh is translatable into several different meanings – from blocked nose and sinus pains, to throaty symptoms, tickly cough and post nasal drip, lump in throat sensation, continuous throat clearing and phlegm.
We treat all varieties of catarrh, although many are in fact related to sinus/nose conditions and some to gastro-oesophageal reflux disease. One particular form of catarrh that we successfully treat is the irritating continuous clearing of the throat, the feeling of a lump at the back of the tongue, possibly with a tickly, dry cough and other throat symptoms.
It is well recorded in medical literature that up to around 20% of the population suffer with this condition, which may also be related to snoring, enlarged tonsils and nose blockage. In particular, we look for a long uvula, which is often the cause of these symptoms.
This long uvula has the classic slightly swollen tip of someone who suffers with chronic catarrh and throat clearing. See how it is sitting on the back of the tongue giving the feeling of something being there? We treat this with Laser Uvulectomy , a 10 minute procedure under local anaesthetic.
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Catarrh Treatment Fees
Ear, Nose and Throat Consultation: £200
Clinic procedures: £100
We work with all the major insurers.
For short form answers to the common catarrh questions below please see our Catarrh FAQ page:
What is catarrh?
Can catarrh be cured?
What are catarrh symptom?
Can catarrh affect your ears?
Can catarrh cause bad breath?
What is catarrh of the Eustachian tube?
The treatment of catarrh is directed to its cause, from nasal allergy to acid regurgitation from the stomach into the throat. One of the main treatments we perform is called laser vapourisation of the uvula (Laser uvulectomy).
This structure is the hanging down object in the back of the throat (see picture on this page), which can cause a lot of the symptoms of catarrh. It is our experience that laser uvulectomy under local anaesthetic can be beneficial in approximately 70% of patients with throat-type catarrh caused by a long uvula. 95% of these procedures are performed under local anaesthetic, which is mostly with the simple application of an anaesthetic spray, followed by a single small injection. The procedure takes about 10 minutes. Speech and swallowing are not affected. Recovery is quick, patients can go back to work after half an hour has passed.
Laser treatment of catarrh
Using the flash-scanned Carbon Dioxide laser.
95% of the procedures are performed under local anaesthetic, which is mostly with the simple application of an anaesthetic spray, followed by a single small injection. The procedure takes about 10 minutes. Speech and swallowing are not affected. Recovery on the ward is quick. Patients are usually eating and drinking within 30 minutes of return from the operating theatre. Patients are observed with regular blood pressure and pulse measurement on the ward for up to 1 hour post surgery, until they feel they are able to return home. Driving home is allowed, but not encouraged.
Because a small ulcer is left in the back of the mouth after the operation, there is quite bad pain for around 1 week after this procedure. This pain is well controlled if regular painkillers are used. Typically these are Co-Codamol (30/500) and Diclofenac E/C (50mg). An antiseptic gargle helps the area to heal quickly. Follow-up is usually arranged for 4 weeks after surgery has been performed.
Success rate for laser treatment of catarrh
70% of patients report complete relief or major improvement in their catarrhal symptoms. In some cases, this process is slow as there is often a “phantom limb” effect where habit keeps the throat clearing going for longer than might be expected. 20% have some improvement; 10% have none. Unfortunately, there is no specific test that can be done to determine who will do well with this procedure. It is a case of doing it safely, then see what happens. Since the uvula plays no function of note, it is not missed.