• Sinus & Allergy
  • Ears, Hearing & Balance
  • Throat & Neck

Sinus & Allergy

The Physicians at Victoria ENT & Allergy Associates have been helping the people of Victoria and surrounding communities for over 40 years. Our site has broken down the conditions we treat into three main areas:

Sinus & Allergy

Sinus and allergy problems can seriously affect a person’s quality of life. The physicians at Victoria ENT & Allergy Associates have been treating sinus and allergy conditions in Victoria and surrounding communities for more than 30 years. Don’t let sinus and allergy problems impact your life any longer. For more details on specific sinus and allergy conditions that we treat, refer to the links on the left.

If you have had sinus surgery and are looking for an alternative to repeat surgeries, Victoria ENT & Allergy offers SINUVA, a treatment for nasal polyps for adults who have had sinus surgery.

 

 

Learn More About The Various Types…

Your immune system produces substances known as antibodies. Some of these antibodies protect you from unwanted invaders that could make you sick or cause an infection. When you have allergies, your immune system makes antibodies that identify your particular allergen as something harmful, even though it isn’t. When you come into contact with the allergen, your immune system’s reaction inflames your skin, sinuses, airways or digestive system.

The severity of allergies varies from person to person and can range from minor irritation to anaphylaxis — a potentially life-threatening emergency. While allergies can’t be cured, a number of treatments can help relieve your allergy symptoms.

Allergies can develop at any age, possibly even in the womb. They commonly occur in children but may give rise to symptoms for the first time in adulthood. Asthma may persist in adults while nasal allergies tend to decline in old age.

Why, you may ask, are some people “sensitive” to certain allergens while most are not? Why do allergic persons produce more IgE than those who are non-allergic? The major distinguishing factor appears to be heredity. For some time, it has been known that allergic conditions tend to cluster in families. Your own risk of developing allergies is related to your parents’ allergy history. If neither parent is allergic, the chance that you will have allergies is about 15%. If one parent is allergic, your risk increases to 30% and if both are allergic, your risk is greater than 60%.

Although you may inherit the tendency to develop allergies, you may never actually have symptoms. You also do not necessarily inherit the same allergies or the same diseases as your parents. It is unclear what determines which substances will trigger a reaction in an allergic person. Additionally, which diseases might develop or how severe the symptoms might be is unknown.

Another major piece of the allergy puzzle is the environment. It is clear that you must have a genetic tendency and be exposed to an allergen in order to develop an allergy. Additionally, the more intense and repetitive the exposure to an allergen and the earlier in life it occurs, the more likely it is that an allergy will develop.

There are other important influences that may conspire to cause allergic conditions. Some of these include smoking, pollution, infection, and hormones.

At Victoria ENT & Allergy Associates, we can perform tests to determine which allergens are affecting you and implement a treatment plan made especially for your needs. Call us today to schedule an appointment – (361) 573-4331

Balloon Sinuplasty (BSP) is a safe and effective sinus procedure for chronic sinusitis patients seeking relief from uncomfortable sinus pain symptoms.

With Balloon Sinuplasty, ENT doctors open inflamed sinuses in the same way that heart surgeons open up blocked arteries during balloon angioplasty. The procedure is less invasive than traditional sinus surgery, and effective at relieving symptoms of chronic sinusitis. Balloon Sinuplasty allows patients to return to normal activities quickly. Unlike conventional sinus surgery, it does not include removal of bone or tissue from the nose. And, Balloon Sinuplasty is now offered by some doctors in their office under local anesthesia, so that there is no need to go to an operating room or undergo general anesthesia.

Don’t wait any longer to get relief; call Victoria ENT & Allergy Associates today and find out how Balloon Sinuplasty can help relieve your chronic sinusitis symptoms.

What Others Are Saying

“It’s been a year since surgery with Balloon Sinuplasty™ Technology, and I’ve felt much better. I have energy to work a full day and to go out at night. It’s made a tremendous difference in how I approach my life.”

– Sherwin G.
Occupation: Allergist
Years as a chronic sinusitis sufferer: 3.5

Learn More About Sinuplasty

Listed below are important brochures and documents for you to download to learn more about Sinuplasty.
Patient Brochure
Sinusitis Fact Sheet
Balloon Sinuplasty Fact Sheet

If you would like our office to contact you, please fill out the form below and fax it to: (361) 485-2732.
Snot Form

– Helpful Balloon Sinuplasty Videos –

Sinus infections are caused by infections from a pathogenic microorganism (virus, bacterium, or fungus), which grows within a sinus and causes intermittent blockage of the sinus ostium.

Most people do not transmit sinus infections; most clinicians agree that except for rare instances, sinus infections are not contagious but arise from mainly viruses and bacteria that, by chance, contaminate a person who sinuses support their proliferation because of minor, and rarely, major abnormalities in the person’s sinus tissue (for example, swelling, inflammation, abnormal mucus production, and rarely, facial or nasal trauma).

Sinusitis is inflammation of the air cavities within the passages of the nose. Sinusitis can be caused by infection, but also can be caused by allergies and chemical or particulate irritation of the sinuses. Sinusitis may be classified in several ways such as acute sinus infection, subacute sinus infection, chronic sinus infection, infected sinusitis, and noninfectious sinusitis.
Sinus infection symptoms include sinus headache, facial tenderness, pressure or pain in the sinuses, fever, cloudy discolored drainage, and feeling of nasal stuffiness, sore throat, and cough.

Bacterial infection of the sinuses is suspected when facial pain, pus-like nasal discharge, and symptoms that persists for longer than a week and are not responding to over-the-counter nasal medications.

Sinus infection is generally diagnosed based on patient history and physical examination by a health care practitioner. If you think you may have a sinus infection, call our office today to schedule an appointment – (361) 573-4331

Your nose is important to your health. It filters the air you breathe, removing dust, germs, and irritants. It warms and moistens the air to keep your lungs and tubes that lead to them from drying out. Your nose also contains the nerve cells that help your sense of smell. When there is a problem with your nose, your whole body can suffer. For example, the stuffy nose of the common cold can make it hard for you to breathe, sleep, or get comfortable.

Many problems besides the common cold can affect the nose. They include

  • Deviated septum – a shifting of the wall that divides the nasal cavity into halves
  • Nasal polyps – soft growths that develop on the lining of your nose or sinuses
  • Nosebleeds
  • Rhinitis – inflammation of the nose and sinuses sometimes caused by allergies. The main symptom is a runny nose.
  • Nasal fractures, also known as a broken nose

If you are having regular nosebleeds or difficulty breathing, call to make an appointment to see one of our physicians at (361) 573-4331

 

Source: NIH

Breathing Problems
Nasal Fractures
Dizziness & Balance Disorders
Ear Wax
Congenital Aural Atresia

Innovation that may help you breath easier.

SINUVA is a treatment for nasal polyps for adults who have had ethmoid sinus surgery and are looking for alternative to repeat sinus surgery.

SINUVA opens in the sinus and delivers anti-inflammatory medicine to treat nasal polyps.
Learn if SINUVA is for you

Ears, Hearing & Balance

Ears, Hearing & Balance

Our ability to effectively communicate and function in our everyday lives are impacted by ear problems. These problems can affect people of all ages. Our three Physicians and our highly-trained Audiology team from the Victoria Hearing Center, can help through diagnostics and treatment solutions tailored for your specific needs. From ear-infections in children to age-related hearing loss, we are here to help. For more information on specific conditions we treat see our links to the left. 

Learn More About The Various Types…

Ear infections are the most common reason parents bring their child to a doctor. Three out of four children will have at least one ear infection by their third birthday. Adults can also get ear infections, but they are less common.

The infection usually affects the middle ear and is called otitis media. The tubes inside the ears become clogged with fluid and mucus. This can affect hearing, because sound cannot get through all that fluid.

If your child isn’t old enough to say “My ear hurts,” here are a few things to look for

  • Tugging at ears
  • Crying more than usual
  • Fluid draining from the ear
  • Trouble sleeping
  • Balance difficulties
  • Hearing problems

Your health care provider will diagnose an ear infection by looking inside the ear with an instrument called an otoscope.

Often, ear infections go away on their own. Your health care provider may recommend pain relievers. Severe infections and infections in young babies may require antibiotics.

Children who get infections often may need surgery to place small tubes inside their ears. The tubes relieve pressure in the ears so that the child can hear again.

If you think that you or your child may have any ear infection, call our to make an appointment to see one of our physicians – (361) 573-4331

 

Source: NIH: National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders

Swimmer’s ear is inflammation, irritation, or infection of the outer ear and ear canal. The medical term for swimmer’s ear is otitis externa.

Swimmer’s ear is more common among teenagers and young adults. It may occur with a middle ear infection or a respiratory infection such as a cold.

Swimming in unclean water can lead to swimmer’s ear. Pseudomonas and other bacteria commonly often found in water can cause ear infections. Rarely, the infection may be caused by a fungus.

Other causes of swimmer’s ear include:

  • Scratching the ear or inside the ear
  • Getting something stuck in the ear
  • Trying to clean wax from the ear canal with cotton swabs or small objects can damage the skin.

Long-term (chronic) swimmer’s ear may be due to:

  • Allergic reaction to something placed in the ear
  • Chronic skin conditions, such as eczema or psoriasis

Symptoms of swimmer’s ear include:

  • Drainage from the ear — yellow, yellow-green, pus-like, or foul smelling
  • Ear pain, which may get worse when you pull on the outer ear
  • Hearing loss
  • Itching of the ear or ear canal

The health care provider will look inside your ears. The ear canal area will look red and swollen. The skin inside the ear canal may be scaly or shedding.

Touching or moving the outer ear will increase the pain. The eardrum may be hard to see because of a swelling in the outer ear. Or, the eardrum may have a hole in it. This is called a perforation.

A sample of fluid may be removed from the ear and sent to a lab to look for bacteria or fungus.

In most cases, you will need to use ear drops containing antibiotics for 10 to 14 days. If the ear canal is very swollen, a wick may be put into the ear to allow the drops to travel to the end of the canal. Your doctor or nurse can show you how to do this.

Other treatments may include:

  • Antibiotics taken by mouth if you have a middle ear infection or infection that spreads beyond the ear
  • Corticosteroids to reduce itching and inflammation
  • Pain medication, such as acetaminophen (Tylenol) or ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin)
  • Vinegar (acetic acid) ear drops

People with chronic swimmer’s ear may need long-term or repeated treatments to avoid complications. If you think you may have swimmer’s ear, call to make an appointment with one of our physicians – (361) 573-4331

 

Source: NIH

It’s frustrating to be unable to hear well enough to enjoy talking with friends or family. Hearing disorders make it hard, but not impossible, to hear. They can often be helped. Deafness can keep you from hearing sound at all.

What causes hearing loss? Some possibilities are

There are two main types of hearing loss. One happens when your inner ear or auditory nerve is damaged. This type is usually permanent. The other kind happens when sound waves cannot reach your inner ear. Earwax build-up, fluid, or a punctured eardrum can cause it. Treatment or surgery can often reverse this kind of hearing loss.

Untreated, hearing problems can get worse. If you have trouble hearing, you can get help. Possible treatments include hearing aids, cochlear implants, special training, certain medicines, and surgery.

If you are experiencing a hearing loss, call to make an appointment to see one of our physicians – (361) 573-4331

 

Source: NIH: National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders

Cholesteatoma is a type of skin cyst that is located in the middle ear and mastoid bone in the skull.

Cholesteatoma can be a birth defect (congenital). It more commonly occurs as a complication of chronic ear infection.The eustachian tube helps equalize pressure in the middle ear. When it is not working well, negative pressure can build up and pull part of the eardrum (tympanic membrane) inward. This creates a pocket or cyst that fills with old skin cells and other waste material.The cyst may become infected or get bigger. This can cause the breakdown of some of the middle ear bones or other structures of the ear. This can affect hearing, balance, and possibly the function of the facial muscles. Symptoms include:
An ear exam may show a pocket or opening (perforation) in the eardrum, often with drainage. A deposit of old skin cells may be seen with a microscope or an otoscope — a special instrument to view the ear. Sometimes a group of blood vessels may be seen in the ear.The following tests may be performed to rule out other causes of dizziness:

Cholesteatomas very often continue to grow if they are not removed. Surgery is most often successful. However, you may need the ear cleaned by a health care provider from time to time. Another surgery may be needed if the cholesteatoma comes back. If you think you may have a Cholesteatoma, call to make an appointment to see one of our physicians – (361) 573-4331

 

Source: NIH

Tinnitus is often described as a ringing in the ears. It also can sound like roaring, clicking, hissing, or buzzing. It may be soft or loud, high pitched or low pitched. You might hear it in either one or both ears.

Millions of Americans have tinnitus. People with severe tinnitus may have trouble hearing, working or even sleeping.

Causes of tinnitus include

  • Hearing loss in older people
  • Exposure to loud noises
  • Ear and sinus infections
  • Heart or blood vessel problems
  • Meniere’s disease
  • Brain tumors
  • Hormonal changes in women
  • Thyroid problems
  • Certain medicines

Treatment depends on the cause. Treatments may include hearing aids, sound-masking devices, medicines, and ways to learn how to cope with the noise.

 

Source: NIH: National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders

Ear tube insertion involves placing tubes through the eardrums. The eardrum is the thin layer of tissue that separates the outer and middle ear.

While the child is asleep and pain-free (general anesthesia), a small surgical cut is made in the eardrum. Any fluid that has collected behind the eardrum is removed with suction through this cut.Then, a small tube is placed through the eardrum. The tube allows air to flow in so that pressure is the same on both sides of the eardrum. Also, trapped fluid can flow out of the middle ear. This prevents hearing loss and reduces the risk of ear infections.
The procedure is performed because the buildup of fluid behind your child’s eardrum may cause some hearing loss. But most children do not have long-term damage to their hearing or speech, even when the fluid is there for many months.Ear tube insertion may be done when fluid builds up behind your child’s eardrum and:

  • Does not go away after 3 months and both ears are affected
  • Does not go away after 6 months and fluid is only in one ear

Ear infections that do not go away with treatment or that keep coming back are also reasons for placing an ear tube. If an infection does not go away with treatment, or if a child has many ear infections over a short period of time, the doctor may recommend ear tubes.

Ear tubes are also sometimes used for people of any age who have:

  • A severe ear infection that spreads to nearby bones (mastoiditis) or the brain, or that damages nearby nerves
  • Injury to the ear after sudden changes in pressure from flying or deep sea diving
After the procedure, children most often stay in the recovery room for a short time and leave the hospital the same day as the ear tubes are inserted. Your child may be groggy and fussy for an hour or so while waking up from anesthesia. Your child’s doctor may prescribe ear drops or antibiotics for a few days after the surgery.
After this procedure, most parents report that their children:

  • Have fewer ear infections
  • Recover more quickly from infections

If the tubes do not fall out on their own in a few years, an ear specialist may have to remove them. If ear infections return after the tubes fall out, another set of ear tubes can be inserted. If you think your child may need ear tubes, call to make an appointment to see one of our physicians – (361) 573-4331

Source: NIH

Tympanic Membrane Perforation
Conductive Hearing Loss
Nerve Hearing Loss
Thyroid Disease
Parathyroid Disease

Throat & Neck

Throat & Neck

From snoring to swallowing disorders, the physicians at Victoria ENT & Allergy Associates have been serving the needs of Victoria and the surrounding communities for mover 30 years. For more details about specific Throat and Neck conditions that we treat, refer to the links on the left. 

Learn More About The Various Types…

Your tonsils and adenoids are part of your lymphatic system. Your tonsils are in the back of your throat. Your adenoids are higher up, behind your nose. Both help protect you from infection by trapping germs coming in through your mouth and nose.

Sometimes your tonsils and adenoids become infected. Tonsillitis makes your tonsils sore and swollen and causes a sore throat. Enlarged adenoids can be sore, make it hard to breathe and cause ear problems.

The first treatment for infected tonsils and adenoids is antibiotics. If you have frequent infections or trouble breathing, you may need surgery. Surgery to remove the tonsils is tonsillectomy. Surgery to remove adenoids is adenoidectomy

If you think you may be experiencing issues with your tonsils or adenoids, call our office to make an appointment to see one of our physicians – (361) 573-4331

Snoring is the sound you make when your breathing is blocked while you are asleep. The sound is caused by tissues at the top of your airway that strike each other and vibrate. Snoring is common, especially among older people and people who are overweight.

When severe, snoring can cause frequent awakenings at night and daytime sleepiness. It can disrupt your bed partner’s sleep. Snoring can also be a sign of a serious sleep disorder called sleep apnea. You should see your health care provider if you are often tired during the day, don’t feel that you sleep well, or wake up gasping.

To reduce snoring

  • Lose weight if you are overweight. It may help, but thin people can snore, too.
  • Cut down or avoid alcohol and other sedatives at bedtime
  • Don’t sleep flat on your back

Source: NIH: National Institute on Aging

Sleep apnea is a common disorder that causes your breathing to stop or get very shallow. Breathing pauses can last from a few seconds to minutes. They may occur 30 times or more an hour.

The most common type is obstructive sleep apnea. It causes your airway to collapse or become blocked during sleep. Normal breathing starts again with a snort or choking sound. People with sleep apnea often snore loudly. However, not everyone who snores has sleep apnea.

You are more at risk for sleep apnea if you are overweight, male, or have a family history or small airways. Children with enlarged tonsils may also get it.

Doctors diagnose sleep apnea based on medical and family histories, a physical exam, and sleep study results.

When your sleep is interrupted throughout the night, you can be drowsy during the day. People with sleep apnea are at higher risk for car crashes, work-related accidents, and other medical problems. If you have it, it is important to get treatment. Lifestyle changes, mouthpieces, surgery, and breathing devices can treat sleep apnea in many people.

If you suffer from sleep apnea, call our office to make an appointment to see one of our physicians – (361) 573-4331

 

Source: NIH: National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute

 

Source: NIH

Head and neck cancer includes cancers of the mouth, nose, sinuses, salivary glands, throat, and lymph nodes in the neck. Most begin in the moist tissues that line the mouth, nose and throat. Symptoms include

  • A lump or sore that does not heal
  • A sore throat that does not go away
  • Trouble swallowing
  • A change or hoarseness in the voice

Using tobacco or alcohol increases your risk. In fact, 85 percent of head and neck cancers are linked to tobacco use, including smoking and smokeless tobacco. If found early, these cancers are often curable. Treatments may include surgery, radiation therapy, chemotherapy or a combination. Treatments can affect eating, speaking or even breathing, so patients may need rehabilitation.

If you believe that you may have a tumor or are experiencing some of the symptoms above, call our office to make and appointment to see one of our physicians – (361) 573-4331

 

Source: NIH: National Cancer Institute

If you have a swallowing disorder, you may have difficulty or pain when swallowing. Some people cannot swallow at all. Others may have trouble swallowing liquids, foods, or saliva. This makes it hard to eat. Often, it can be difficult to take in enough calories and fluids to nourish your body.

Anyone can have a swallowing disorder, but it is more likely in the elderly. It often happens because of other conditions, including

  • Nervous system disorders, such as Parkinson’s disease and cerebral palsy
  • Problems with your esoph.agus, including GERD (gastroesophageal reflux disease)
  • Stroke
  • Head or spinal cord injury
  • Cancer of the head, neck, or esophagus

Medicines can help some people, while others may need surgery. Swallowing treatment with a speech-language pathologist can help. You may find it helpful to change your diet or hold your head or neck in a certain way when you eat. In very serious cases, people may need feeding tubes.

If you are experiencing difficulties swallowing or some of the symptoms above, please call to make an appointment to see on of our physicians – (361) 573-4331

 

Source: NIH: National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders

Tongue-Tie
Parotid
Other Salivary Gland Tumors
TMJ
Voice Disorders