ENDOSCOPIC SURGERY IN OTORHINOLARYNGOLOGY
Τhe most important contribution of Medicine to humans is the relief from pain, sickness and fear, as Hippocrates stated centuries ago. Despite the development of modern medicine, patients often postpone surgical treatment of diseases, mainly out of fear of postoperative pain and discomfort. That is why, in recent years, in all surgical specialities, we tend to try to achieve the same therapeutic effect using the least mutilating method, which has led to the development of more functional techniques.
With these techniques, the intervention is more targeted to the afflicted organ, resulting in less harm to surrounding healthy tissue. Head and neck surgery has progressed tremendously over the last few years, with the increasingly frequent use of modern endoscopic techniques instead of traditional open surgical procedures.
The area of the upper respiratory tract is ideal for such endoscopic techniques, because the natural passages of this particular anatomical area are used for surgical access. Endoscopic surgery in the nasal and paranasal areas has led to the much more functional, nonincisional treatment of conditions such as sinusitis, acute or chronic, polyps, benign and some malignant tumours, and nasal septum deviation.
In the area of the larynx thanks to endoscopic laser transoral surgery the treatment of benign diseases and cancer in the early stages has radically changed. Thus it is now possible to remove such tumours, without external incisions and tracheotomy. Other advantages for the patient is that this method allows for repeat surgery in case of local relapse, especially in cancers of the vocal cords, and it does not restrict other therapeutic options in patients with second primary head and neck malignancies.
It also ensures satisfactory voice quality, limited swallowing disorder, low perioperative morbidity, and it minimises the risk of intraoperative dispersal. Today’s application concerns benign conditions such as obstructive sleep apnea and early pharynx and larynx cancer stages.
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