Focused Ultrasound Therapy
Focused ultrasound is a rapidly evolving, noninvasive, therapeutic technology with the potential to improve the quality of life and decrease the cost of care for patients with sinonasal disease. This novel technology focuses beams of ultrasound energy precisely and accurately on targets in the nose without damaging surrounding normal tissue.
How it Works
Where the beams converge, focused ultrasound produces thermal ablation of the target, which can treat turbinate hypertrophy and possibly other conditions in the nose.
In a preclinical study, focused ultrasound was nearly twice as effective as radiofrequency ablation for treatment of inferior turbinate hypertrophy.
The primary options for treatment of sinonasal disease include medication, radiofrequency turbinoplasty or invasive surgery.
For certain patients, focused ultrasound could provide an alternative to surgery with less risk of complications – such as surgical wound healing or infection – at a lower cost. It can reach the desired target without damaging surrounding tissue and is repeatable, if necessary. While significant preclinical work has been accomplished, there is still much to be done before this technology will be widely available.
At the present time, there are no clinical trials recruiting patients for focused ultrasound treatment of sinonasal disease.
Regulatory Approval and Reimbursement
Focused ultrasound treatment for sinonasal disease is not yet approved by regulatory bodies or covered by medical insurance companies.
Kim JK, Cho SW, Kim H, Jo SC, Kim HG, Won TB, Kim JW, Lim JH, Rhee CS. Development of High-Intensity Focused Ultrasound (HIFU) Therapy in Inferior Turbinate Hypertrophy. Clin Exp Otorhinolaryngol. 2021 Mar 30. doi: 10.21053/ceo.2020.02383.
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