The throat is obviously important for eating and drinking, but also voice. Optimal well being in the throat is integral to taste, nutrition, airway and well being. Conditions affecting the throat include mouth and lip ulceration. These may relate to low grade inflammation and/or infection in the mouth or oral cavity and maybe treated medically. Persisting ulceration of the lip, mouth or tongue may represent underlying cancer and requires further urgent work up, biopsy and treatment as is necessary.
The tonsils are a common cause of chronic infection both at childhood and in the adult patient. Modern tonsillectomy is often appropriate for recurrent infection or airway obstruction. Sleep disordered breathing such as obstructive sleep apnoea or nocturnal hypoxaemia is a common diagnosis in adulthood and more commonly in children. Surgical removal of the tonsils (and/or adenoids) is a safe procedure. The pain can be minimised with good anaesthesia and postoperative analgesia. Modern and meticulous technique is important to good outcome. Regular and modern analgesia is imperative in the postoperative period. Extensive patient information sheets prepared by the Australasian College of Surgeons are available through the office.
Snoring is a frequent cause of presentation to the office. This condition can be disruptive socially and is manageable with modern techniques. These can include attention to the nose, throat or tongue base. Treatment options can include snoreplasty in the office (injection snoreplasty/radio frequency snoreplasty) or more aggressive intervention such as tonsillo-uvulo-palato-pharyngoplasty with or without tongue base radio frequency ablation. This will require admission to hospital. Further information is available through the office.
Sleep apnoea is a common condition, often under diagnosed and under managed. Patients who snore or have excessive sleepiness during the day are recommended to undergo sleep studies. These can be provided through the office via referral. These are usually approved for payment by your insurance company. Further information is available on application.
Other conditions of the mouth and jaw are also managed including tongue ties and jaw joint abnormalities. These are usually managed in conjunction with the Oral Physicians through referral.
Voice & Swallow
Conditions of the voice and swallow are also managed through the office. These will usually require radiological investigation and/or endoscopy of the throat and larynx. Treatment will usually be in conjunction with the Speech Language Therapist with or without examination of the larynx under general anaesthetic.
Tumours of the face, lip, tongue and mouth are often able to be treated in the office under local anaesthetic. Persisting ulceration or lumps should be assessed early as early diagnosis will often lead to early treatment and better outcomes.
Head and Neck Otolaryngologists are trained to exam and treat conditions of the head and neck. These can include benign and malignant skin lesions, lumps in the face and neck or any cancers which may arise from the skin of the head, neck, ears, ear canal, nose, sinuses, mouth or throat. Tumours arising in these areas may spread to local lymph nodes in the neck and maybe the sole presenting symptom. Early assessment with examination of the upper respiratory tract including possible fine needle biopsy of the lump may facilitate early diagnosis and treatment. Lesions treated early usually have more favourable outcome and often need less aggressive forms of treatment.
Patients with any ulceration of the skin of the head and neck, nose, throat , ear or any swelling which persists for more than two weeks associated with pain in the throat, swallowing disturbance or alteration in voice requires urgent assessment by your general practitioner with early referral to an Otolaryngologist, Head and Neck Surgeon.