We treat a wide variety of diseases of the ear, nose, and throat in our pediatric patients. Our staff frequently evaluates recurring ear, sinus, and throat infections.
We offer allergy testing (for both food-related and inhalant allergies) and administer allergy shots.
We also insert ear tubes and perform tonsillectomies.
Allergy Testing (Food & Inhalant)
Chronic sinus conditions can sometimes be traced to allergies. When the body comes into contact with an allergen – something that produces a negative physical reaction – it produces histamine, a chemical that causes swelling and inflammation. The allergens that cause the most sinus issues are the ones we inhale, such as molds and pollens.
Skin Prick Testing
Skin Prick Testing can identify up to 40 different allergies at one time. Our staff will draw small marks on your child’s forearm and apply a drop of allergen extract next to each mark. A lancet (needle) will barely penetrate the surface on the skin. The testing is not painful, and there is no bleeding.
Test results will appear in about 15 minutes. A positive test will appear as a raised, red bump on the skin, similar to a mosquito bite. Skin testing is the oldest and most reliable form of allergy testing. Children age two and older may receive skin testing.
Allergy tests not only establish the presence of allergies but also measure their severity. This will help our team determine what treatments are right for your child. Once we can pinpoint allergens that are causing symptoms, we can customize treatment for your child.
Treatment may include helping you reduce your child’s exposure to the allergen, medications, allergy shots, or allergy drops under the tongue.
While some patients may be able to manage their allergies with over-the-counter medications and supplements, the most effective way to treat and eliminate allergies is to either eliminate your child’s contact with the allergen or eliminate the body’s allergic reaction to it.
Allergy shots are effective at helping to desensitize the body to the allergen over time and can eventually eliminate your child’s allergy.
The most common health complaint for infants and young children, ear infections often affect the middle ear. When the small tubes inside the ears become clogged with fluid and mucus, children can suffer from pain, discomfort, vertigo, and/or hearing loss. Chronic ear infections may also lead to speech and language delays.
For children who suffer from repeated ear infections or those whose ear infections do not improve with antibiotics, Tympanostomy tubes may be placed into the eardrum.
Tympanostomy tubes are small plastic tubes that help ventilate the ear and prevent fluid build-up—and infections—in the ear.
Placing tubes into your child’s ears is performed in our office under a brief (about 10 minutes) general anesthetic. The procedure is painless, and your child will be able to return to normal activities as soon as he or she leaves our office.
Another common childhood complaint is tonsillitis. Tonsillitis is an inflammation of the tonsils caused by an infection, usually viral. Symptoms of tonsil infections include sore throat, swollen, red tonsils that may have white spots on them, fever, coughing, headache, and swollen lymph nodes.
While the majority of kids usually recover from a tonsil infection within a week using home remedies, over-the-counter medications, or antibiotics when bacterial infections are the cause, some do not respond to treatment and/or experience repeated infections. In these situations, a tonsillectomy may be recommended.
Some of the reasons we may recommend a tonsillectomy for your child include having four or more tonsil infections per year despite antibiotic treatment; enlarged tonsils causing breathing and sleeping issues; and chronic tonsillitis associated with “strep throat” and not responding to treatment.
A tonsillectomy is performed on an outpatient basis, but your child may spend 3 to 4 hours in the hospital following the surgery for observation. Children under age 3 may stay in the hospital overnight. The actual surgery is about 20 minutes, performed through the mouth under general anesthesia, and produces little to no bleeding.