Posts for: December, 2014

By West Coast Ear, Nose and Throat
December 18, 2014
Category: Thyroid Surgery
Tags: Thyroid Surgery  

Here are some telltale signs that you may need thyroid surgery in Thousand Oaks.

Here are the most common conditions and reasons why it may be time to consider getting thyroid surgery in Thousand Oaks.

Why is thyroid surgery performed?

Thyroid surgery is typically recommended if thyroid cancer is detected, if there is a nodule that is causing issues such as problemsThyroid Surgery swallowing or breathing, if there is a fluid-filled cyst that reoccurs after drainage, or if hyperthyroidism cannot be properly treated with the use of medications. However, surgery for hyperthyroidism is rare.

What is thyroid surgery?

The main purpose of thyroid surgery is to remove part or all of the thyroid gland to prevent nodules or cysts, or to remove cancerous parts of the thyroid.

There are several types of thyroid surgeries including a total thyroidectomy in which the entire thyroid gland is removed; a thyroid lobectomy, in which your Thousand Oaks ENT will only remove one lobe; or a subtotal thyroidectomy, in which we will remove more than one lobe (this is most common in those whose hyperthyroidism is due to Graves’ disease).

Thyroid surgery is an inpatient procedure and most patients can leave the hospital one or two days after surgery. Your general health along with the type of surgery will dictate how soon you can leave the hospital and how long your recovery time will be.

What to consider before thyroid surgery

If your doctor has recommended a total thyroidectomy, your entire thyroid will be removed. This means that you will develop hypothyroidism and need to take a synthetic hormone for the rest of your life.

Other thyroid surgeries like a lobectomy can also bring about hypothyroidism. If this happens you will also need to take thyroid medication for life.

If you are experiencing any of these problematic symptoms, then it may be time to schedule your next appointment with your Thousand Oaks ENT as soon as possible. We will be able to run the necessary tests to determine whether thyroid surgery is right for you.

By West Coast ENT Head and Neck Surgery
December 17, 2014
Category: Hearing Aids
Tags: hearing aids  

Your Camarillo ENT opens up about the most classic hearing loss signs.

Currently about 48 million Americans have reported some degree of hearing loss, and as we get older this statistic only increases, with about one in three people over the age of 65 having some form of hearing loss. If you are experiencing hearing difficulties, then here are some of the signs that you may benefit from getting a hearing aid in Camarillo.

Do you…

  • Have problems hearing people or conversations in loud environments like restaurants or a mall?
  • Have trouble following the conversation when in a group of people?
  • Have to ask people to repeat themselves often?
  • Look at people’s lips to try and make out what they are saying?
  • Turn up the volume on your TV or car radio?
  • Refrain from social gatherings because of problems hearing conversations?

If you’ve said “yes” to any or most of these questions, then you may want to consider seeing your Camarillo ENT about how a hearing aid could help you hear better.

Why should I get a hearing aid?

The most obvious answer is that a hearing aid will help you hear; however, there is so much more to it than that. In fact research conducted by the National Council of Aging found that those who opted for hearing aids noticed significant improvements to their mental health, social life and even sex life!

If you think you may need a hearing aid, we recommend talking to us right away. The longer you wait to seek treatment the longer it will take your brain to grow accustomed to the hearing aid. The sooner you get a hearing aid the better your chances that your brain will adapt to the retraining quicker.

Which hearing aid is right for me?

There are several different kinds of hearing aids available, from those that fit behind your ear to those that go right into the ear canal. A lot of will depend on your comfort, hearing loss severity and budget. However, the best way to decide what kind of hearing aid is right for you is to schedule an appointment with your Camarillo ENT. Then we can conduct proper hearing loss tests to determine which type of hearing aid will be most effective.

Dealing with hearing loss can be frustrating and we want you to be part of the conversation again. Call your Camarillo ENT and let us know that you would like to discuss hearing aid options with us. We would be happy to schedule your next appointment.

By West Coast Ear, Nose and Throat
December 15, 2014
Category: Allergies
Tags: indoor allergens   pet dander   pets  

Your Simi Valley ENT tells you how to best handle relentless pet allergies.

A pet can be a wonderful addition to any household, and can often feel like just another member of the family; however, it can feel frustrating when those itchy red eyes and sneezing are caused by your fluffy friend. However, this doesn’t mean you need to part ways with your trusty companion. If you are suffering from pet dander allergies, your Simi Valley ENT shares effective ways to alleviate your symptoms:

Lessen contact

While this might seem harsh, the less contact your pet has with certain spaces in your home the more relief you will experience. This means keeping cats and dogs out of bedrooms, which can cause major problems for those with severe allergies or asthma. Also, limiting pets to rooms with only hardwood floors instead of carpet, which can trap dander, may also help cut down on your allergies.

Don’t let sleeping dogs lie

While it might seem wonderful to cozy up with your pup after a long day of work, all the sneezing and breathing problems could turn your cuddle fest into a nightmare. This is why your Simi Valley ENT recommends keeping pets off furniture including beds and couches where the dander can get trapped. Should your pet accidentally jump up on the couch, you will want to vacuum and wash the furniture immediately. This same rule applies to rugs, pillows, clothing and blankets.

Keep it Clean!

While dusting and cleaning won’t remove all the dander, it will certainly help. A vacuum that comes equipped with a HEPA filter may be more effective at removing more of these allergens from your home; however, it may be best to vacuum or clean once the person with the pet allergies is not home. If the pet-allergy sufferer is you, consider wearing a facemask while cleaning.

Bath time!

One study from the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology found that after a bath, a dog’s allergen levels decreased by as much as 85 percent. So…you know what this means. It’s time to pull out the bathtub and scrub your pet! Dogs should be getting a bath twice a week to truly help with your pet dander allergies.

If none of these tips offer relief and you’ve tried ever over-the-counter allergy medication, then call your Simi Valley ENT today to schedule an appointment. We would be happy to figure out a treatment plan that helps calm your symptoms and allows you to live happily with your beloved pets.

By West Coast ENT Head and Neck Surgery
December 04, 2014
Category: Ear Infection
Ear InfectionOtitis media is the medical term for middle-ear inflammation. There are 3 types of otitis media: acute otitis media, otitis media with effusion. and chronic suppurative otitis media. Acute otitis media is normally has obvious symptoms associated, especially ear pain. Otitis media with effusion most commonly is not associated with acute symptoms. Lastly, chronic suppurative otitis media is associated with perforation of the ear drum and may or may not have drainage. All 3 of these conditions are associated with hearing loss. Otitis Media is most frequently found in childhood but it can occur at any age. Not all disease in the middle-ear is otitis media, such as cholesteatoma and congenital malformatons of the middle-ear.
The symptoms associated with acute otitis media is ear pain and fever. Irritability can by a symptom or sign that an infant has acute otitis media.

Signs and symptoms common in children include:

  • Irritability
  • Headache
  • Loss of appetite
  • Excessive crying
  • Ear pain, especially when lying down
  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Difficulty hearing or responding to sounds
  • Tugging or pulling on ear
  • Loss of balance
  • Fever of 100 F or higher
  • Drainage of fluid from the ear
Since in some cases an upper respiratory tract infection is the cause of otitis media, there can be symptoms such as cough and nasal discharge. Another symptom could be discharge from the ear, Otorrhea, and can be caused by chronic suppurative otitis media, acute otitis media with perforation of the ear drum, or acute otitis externa.
A virus or bacterium in the middle ear is the cause of an ear infection. Other infections such as cold, flu, allergy or anything that causes congestion and swelling of the nasal passages, throat or eustachian tubes are the cause for an ear infection. The eustachian tubes are a pair of narrow tubes that run from each middle ear to high in the back of the throat, behind the nasal passages. These tubes open and close to refresh air in the ear, regulate air pressure and drain normal secretions from the middle ear. The symptoms associated with an upper respiratory infection or allergy, such as swelling, inflammation, and mucus, can block the eustachian tubes causing a buildup of fluids in the middle ear. The symptoms of an ear infection are usually produced when this fluid becomes infected with bacteria or viruses. Since the eustachian tubes in a child are narrower and more horizontal; ear infections are more common.

Call West Coast ENT Head and Neck Surgery Today!

Are you a patient of West Coast ENT Head and Neck Surgery? If so, we would love to hear about your experiences below! For more information about ear infections in the Thousand Oaks area visit


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