At Orlando ENT Associates, our specialists treat a wide range of head and neck conditions. As board-certified otolaryngologists, head and neck surgeons, we have extensive training and experience in conditions affecting the head and neck.

Endoscopic inspection of the throat and voice box

Our specialists can perform an examination of the throat and larynx (voice box), called a “laryngoscopy.” This examination may be necessary to identify the cause of swallowing problems, vocal changes, excessive coughing, breathing difficulties, ongoing throat pain, or halitosis. This examination can be performed with an endoscope, a long, thin medical tool with a light and tiny camera on the end. It is moved through the throat, with images sent to a video monitor. To ensure patient comfort, a numbing medication is administered. The inspection of the throat and voice box (larynx) takes only a few minutes to complete. 

Thyroid surgery

A “thyroidectomy” is a surgical procedure to remove all or part of the thyroid gland. This gland is at the base of the neck. It produces hormones to regulate a wide range of body systems, including heart rate and metabolism. The gland may need to be removed to treat thyroid disorders, thyroid cancer, an enlarged thyroid gland, or an overactive gland. The amount of the gland that is removed in the surgery will determine whether you will need to take thyroid medication afterwards. When only partially removed, the gland may continue to produce enough hormones.

Why undergo thyroid surgery?

If you have any of these conditions, you may need to undergo thyroid surgery:

  • Thyroid cancer
  • Enlargement of the thyroid
  • Hyperthyroidism 
  • Thyroid nodules 

Parathyroid surgery

Parathyroid surgery involves the partial or complete removal of the parathyroid glands. These glands are located outside the perimeters of the thyroid gland at the front of the throat. The parathyroid gland can become overactive and cause a health condition in which the blood levels of calcium become elevated, a dangerous health issue, which can lead to premature bone thinning, kidney stones, weak muscles, reduced alertness, joint discomfort, and others. The parathyroid is removed under general anesthesia. An incision is placed in the neck to access the gland, which is partially or completely removed, based on the condition of the patient. 

Salivary gland surgery

Salivary gland surgery can be performed to treat cancer affecting various mouth structures. The salivary glands, or “parotid glands” sit in front of the ears. The saliva they produce assists in the digestive process. The mouth has many salivary glands, found in the lips, cheeks, mouth, and in the throat. The salivary gland that must be removed will vary, based on the condition. In most cases, cancer affects the parotid glands, the largest of the salivary glands.

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Head and neck cancer evaluation and surgery

Our head and neck cancer surgeons at Orlando ENT Associates can evaluate and treat head and neck cancers. 

These cancers typically appear in specific cells, called squamous cells, in the lining of the mouth, nose and throat. - For patients experiencing specific symptoms such as an ongoing sore throat, trouble swallowing, mouth sores that do not heal, voice changes such as hoarseness, or persistent neck swelling associated with enlarged lymph nodes. A specialist should quickly evaluate these symptoms to determine whether cancer cells are present, and if so, surgery performed to halt the progression of the disease. 

Tonsillectomy

The tonsils may need to be removed in people who are suffering from ongoing inflammation of the tonsils, or tonsillitis. The tonsils are found at the back of the throat, and function as part of the body’s immune system. When inflamed, the tonsils may cause trouble during sleep, such as snoring. Some patients experience regular bouts of tonsillitis. When this illness occurs more than six times in a year, a tonsillectomy may be performed. 

This treatment can be performed with advanced techniques to improve outcomes and reduce recovery time. At Orlando ENT Associates, our head and neck surgeons use the least invasive surgical techniques, geared to reduce bleeding risks. A tonsillectomy may also be necessary for patients with certain cancers. The type of surgery employed will reflect your condition. The recovery time is generally about four weeks, and you need to plan for one week of rest following the surgery. 

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Adenoidectomy

The adenoids sit behind the nose, above the roof of the mouth. When breathing, the air passes over these glands. The adenoids are part of the body’s lymphatic system, which functions to clear infections and maintain a healthy balance of body fluids. 

The adenoids trap germs that enter the body through the mouth and nose, but are only one part of the lymphatic system, which continues to function when they are surgically removed. If the adenoids are enlarged, the nose can be blocked, leading to snoring, mouth breathing, hearing, voice issues, and cause sleep apnea. The surgical removal of the adenoids can resolve these symptoms.

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