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Functional Endoscopic Sinus Surgery (FESS)

The purpose of Functional Endoscopic Sinus Surgery (FESS) is to open and enlarge the connection between the sinuses and the nose, allowing for proper drainage. It is called an endoscopic procedure because the physician uses an endoscope (a small tube with a light and a camera lens at the end) to view the inside of the nose. FESS may be used to treat severe acute sinusitis, chronic sinusitis or recurrent bouts of sinusitis.

Small incisions or cuts are made to allow the scope to pass. The cuts are made inside the nose. The physician may remove polyps, cysts or thickened mucus membranes.

Endoscopic sinus surgery

What to expect after surgery

Discharge instructions

Please review The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia discharge instructions for Functional Endoscopic Sinus Surgery (FESS).

When to call your child's physician

The following are some of the symptoms that may indicate a need for you to promptly contact your child's physician:

Signs of dehydration


A visit with your child's physician is usually scheduled one to two weeks after surgery and then again several more times in the months after surgery to make sure that the nose is healing properly. Consult your child's physician if you have any questions.

Reviewed by: Steven D. Handler, MD, MBE
Date: February 2009

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