Dr. Chan rocks!!! If you want results, seek him...
10 May 2013
2 months post
Dr. Chan rocks!!! If you want results, seek him out. My road to air has been long (three surgeries in three years); and I have Dr. Chan to thank for getting me here. Growing up, I never really paid too much attention to my breathing. Into my 20’s and 30’s, it started weighing on me (no pun intended). By the time I reached 40, I had enough of my nose collapsing on inhalation; so I decided to do something real about it beyond breathing strips. And...after two failed closed-nose procedures by others to address these issues (first in late 2010 and then early 2012), finding Dr. Chan who performed an open-nose procedure in March 2013 has been a Godsend (I can finally breathe like a normal person!!!).
Surgery 1 included deviated septum repair, medial turbinate reduction and the installation of alar battens to address the nasal valve collapse. About six months into recovery, the left side passageway partially collapsed leaving me unable to capture enough air on inhalation. Any surgical option was a year out from the date of the original surgery.
When scheduling the one-year follow up, I discovered Surgeon 1 had relocated his practice to another state; and I was left to consult with Surgeon 2. Folks, if you have any reservations about a doctor when consulting with him/her, seek another doctor. I regret I didn’t do this. But then maybe I’d never met Dr. Chan and got the ultimate results I now have achieved. Surgery 2 included removal of the alar battens and the installation of a butterfly graft (a so-called permanent breathing strip) using harvested cartilage from my ear. Almost instantly out of recovery, there were issues: A severe lack of air coming into my nose – the reemergence of nasal collapse on inhalation; my snoring had returned (much to the dismay of my wife who had been enjoying HER newfound undisturbed sleep after my first surgery); and, most debilitating, my inability over the next 14 months to sleep for more than 1-2 hours at a time without waking up because of the sheer weight of the graft on my nasal passageways – this really wreaks havoc on your body and psyche.
Aside from my horrible mood, I put on 35 pounds in that time changing nothing else. Basically, Surgery 2 wiped out any success of Surgery 1 and left me with more issues I had to begin with. Follow-up appointments with Surgeon 2 were less than reassuring; and I could tell I wasn’t going to get anywhere staying on that road. In reconnecting with Surgeon 1, he recommended I consult with his colleague, Dr. Chan. Desperate by this time to get relief, I set up the consultation. I can fully appreciate any doctor’s angst in being approached by a patient who’s complaining about two failed surgeries and seeking out your help now; but Dr. Chan never showed any.
He took me on as a patient and, in collaboration with my Surgeon 1, developed a work plan for addressing my issues. Surgery 3 was an open-nose procedure that included removal of the butterfly graft, repurposing of a portion of the butterfly as a spreader graft, left-side maxillary antrostomy to open up the sinus, the discovery and reshaping of a concaved left side alar cartilage and the installation of sutures to pick up the alars with suspension anchored into the bone just below each eye socket. I couldn’t be more happy with the results I’ve achieved from Dr. Chan. My snoring is gone (wife is happy, happy, happy!!!); I can lie on my right side and gaze into her eyes without choking on my breath; and I am sleeping throughout the night again. I’ve already lost 10 pounds, too! It’s amazing what air and sleep will do for your body. On the subject of bleeding or pain, Surgeries 1 and 2 resulted in some bleeding over a day or so. There was no measurable bleeding with Surgery 3. On pain, either I have a larger threshold than I think I do, or there just isn’t any, a true credit to Dr. Chan’s abilities. I would definitely recommend Dr. Chan to anyone who is either approaching their decision to find nasal relief or someone who has had a less than desired result and requires additional work to achieve their desired result. Dr. Chan is a true credit to his profession.
Enjoying sports again - thanks to Dr. Chan
21 May 2013
2 months post
Played racquetball this morning (about nine weeks out of surgery now) for the first time in over two years. The "new" nose functioned perfectly - no loss of air at all, even with the elevated blood pressure. And I won, too! Fantastic! Thanks, again, Dr. Chan!