The maxillary sinuses are located under your cheekbones. When they become blocked and no longer drain properly, an infection can develop. Often, the sinus opening itself becomes blocked, too. The procedure to clear the sinus opening is called a maxillary antrostomy. The procedure to clear the osteomeatal complex is called an uncinectomy. Usually, both are performed together.
In rare cases, a maxillary antrostomy doesn’t help drain the maxillary sinus completely. Or there may be diseased tissue that can’t be removed in this way. If so, your surgeon may need to create a new drainage pathway between the maxillary sinus and the nose (a Caldwell-Luc procedure).
Remember to ask your doctor for details about the benefits and risks of this surgery. You should also find out how many times he or she has performed a maxillary antrostomy.
The greatest benefit of a maxillary antrostomy operation is that you’ll probably be able to breathe more freely and should have fewer sinus infections.
All surgery carries some risk from anesthesia and possible infection. Although rare, other risks do exist with this procedure. They include injury to the eye, injury to your tear ducts, excess tear production, and nose bleeds.
Patients with multiple health issues may have more risks. Be sure to ask your doctor about potential complications from your procedure.
Information on this site should not be used as a substitute for talking with your doctor. Always talk with your doctor about diagnosis and treatment information.