There are no surgical treatments that can control asthma symptoms, but for patients who suffer from both sinus disease that requires surgery and asthma, I have found that these patients report that their asthma flares less often after they have had sinus surgery. In the past, sinus surgery was not recommended for those with asthma for fear that these patients would stop breathing during surgery. This limitation was thought to be caused by the large amount of bleeding encountered during traditional techniques of sinus surgery: Blood could be aspirated into the lungs, and the subsequent nasal packing could potentially cause an asthma flare-up.
The latest endoscopic techniques have limited the amount of bleeding during surgery. Packing is not needed in almost all cases, and aspiration does not occur or is insignificant. In addition, older general anesthetic techniques may have contributed to asthma flare-ups after sinus surgery. Today, surgery is performed under local anesthesia with sedation and there is no general anesthesia required in most instances. However, when general anesthesia is needed, the techniques and agents used today are better than they were in the past. Most asthma patients who had sinus surgery, report that their asthma improved after surgery.