The specialty we call ‘ear, nose and throat’ (ENT) is also known as otorhinolaryngology and it comprises three areas which are, in themselves, highly specialised. For this reason, there are ENT specialists who work primarily as rhinologists, otologists or laryngologists and yet, the ears, nose and throat are very closely linked both anatomically and functionally. ENT specialists therefore usually include all three areas when determining a diagnosis.
Conditions of the outer ear, ear canal and middle ear can often be successfully treated physically or medically, however, surgery is sometimes required. This could be to insert grommets, to seal a collapsed eardrum, to clean the ear in the case of specific types of inflammation or surgery to improve hearing in general.
When the nerve cells of the inner ear or vestibular system are affected (e.g. tinnitus, age-related hearing deterioration, vertigo), it is not always possible to treat the cause.
Difficulty breathing through the nose, chronic colds and pressure in the face are often linked to deformations in the structure of the nose (e.g. deviated septum) or to a disruption in the passage of air through the paranasal sinuses (sinusitis). If moderate measures, like nasal sprays, are not getting results, then surgery can usually help. Septoplasty (correcting a deviated septum), rhinoplasty (correcting the entire structure of the nose) and endoscopic sinus surgery are the most frequent operations within the ENT specialty.
Problems with swallowing, sore throat and hoarseness are further typical symptoms which motivate people to consult an ENT specialist. Cutting edge endoscopes can be used at our ENT practice to view changes in the nasal cavity in detail. This technique can also be used to examine the whole pharynx and larynx, facilitating early discovery and treatment of unhealthy changes to the mucous membrane.
Snoring is not always just a noise problem. It can also impact on quality of sleep and cause secondary conditions. You should consult an ENT specialist to investigate, in particular if you are experiencing interruptions to your breathing during sleep or tiredness during the day.