4. Regarding surgery, Dr. Josephson was a pioneer in the procedure called FESS (Functional Endoscopic Sinus Surgery) which is now considered state of the art. This procedure uses an endoscope for both a diagnosis as well as during the surgical procedure. This gives the surgeon an excellent view of the area being worked on, and thus there is less bleeding, more accuracy, and packing is rarely necessary, which is very important. He says many of his patients simply go home and go to work the next day. I would have liked him to comment about endoscopic surgery using lasers as well, but he didn’t make mention of that technique. People have told me that this laser procedure worked exceptionally well for them. Dr. Josephson is obviously totally committed to FESS, however, and with the micro tools he uses, he apparently is able to keep bleeding and pain levels low for patients, as is the case for endoscopic laser surgery. He also makes no comments about a new surgical procedure called sinuplasty, which is similar in concept to angioplasty. I would certainly like to hear his opinion of that new procedure.
5. He wrote at length about new research developments, especially the remarkable work done by Mayo Clinic researchers regarding the effects of fungus on sinusitis. Although the results are still somewhat controversial, this team has shown that an atypical immune response reaction to fungus in certain people to common fungus might be the root cause of sinusitis. The theory is growing in popularity and new topical anti-fungal medications are being developed.
7. He emphasizes that eating the right foods can make a big difference, but he isn’t totally dogmatic about it. I was turned off once by another book in which the author stated that one must simply give up certain foods if they wanted to get over sinusitis, and these included cheese, chocolate, wine and all other alcoholic beverages, among other things. For a person like me who lived for several years in France, this would be unbearable. I might mention that for a French person it would be unthinkable.
8. A clean living environment is also stressed, and the book has motivated me to break out the bleach bottle and give our bathroom the once over. Molds can apparently grow very rapidly on wet items, so one should be careful about having wet clothes or rags lying around, for example.
9. Also included in the book is a discussion about the validity of alternative therapies, like acupuncture, holistic medicine, and chiropractic, for example. I think this is useful, and in fact a niece recently told me she had acupuncture treatments for her sinus problems and she was excited about how much better she felt.
The five step plan that Dr. Josephson recommends is presented at the end of the book. The steps are:
1. Take care of your sinuses through proper irrigation.
2. Clean up your environment
3. Be vigilant about food choices
4. Take your medication (i.e., take the entire prescription)
5. Embrace life-altering changes and enjoy your health.
There has been a lot of progress made in the treatment of sinusitis in the past 5-10 years, and Dr. Josephson’s book puts it together and brings us up to date. “Sinus Relief Now” is certainly a great reference for anyone with CAID problems. There are descriptions of just about every medication used in any of the treatments, both prescription and OTC. I learned several things I didn’t know before. For example, I didn’t know that antihistimines are only effective against allergies. I thought they would simply prevent excess mucus forming in any case. Also, Dr. Josephson feels that decongestants should not be used long term but only for a week at a time as he believes they can cause problems if used for long periods. In general the book is almost a reference work for any type of respiratory or digestive condition. All sinus sufferers would do well to read “Sinus Relief Now” and then to refer to it any time problems come up. It is the best sinus book I’ve ever read.