Ear nose and throat patient information
We provide information and support on different aspects of treatment for patients who have been referred to our ear nose and throat service.
Before your appointment
Your outpatient appointment will be within 13 weeks of referral and admission will be within 18 weeks. You are welcome to bring a relative, close friend or carer with you to your appointment.
Remember to check your appointment letter for anything specific you have been asked to take with you. In addition, it would be helpful if you could bring:
- your full address and telephone number(s)
- your appointment card and appointment letter
- your GP’s name and address
- money to pay for any prescriptions (or an exemption card)
- a list of questions you may want to ask your consultant
During your appointment
When you arrive please check-in using our self check-in screens at reception.
During your appointment you will have a consultation with a doctor and you may have a nasendoscopy to assess your voice or swallowing.
A nasendoscopy is a procedure that allows a doctor to see your throat. It is usually done at your outpatient appointment and there is no need to prepare in advance. The doctor passes a small tube, called a nasendoscope, into your nostril and passes it gently backwards until it is sitting just above your voice box. This should not be painful. The tube has a bright light and a tiny camera at the end.
We want to involve you in all the decisions about your care and treatment. We will ask for your permission to go ahead with the nasendoscopy. If there is anything you do not understand or you need more time to think about it, please tell the staff caring for you. Remember, it is your decision. You can change your mind at any time, even if you have already agreed to have the procedure. Let staff know immediately if you change your mind. Your wishes will be respected at all times. Some common questions about a nasendoscopy are answered below.
Why should I have a nasendoscopy?
The nasendoscopy allows your doctor to see the inside of your throat and what happens when you speak and swallow.
What are the risks?
Some people have reported a feeling of light-headedness, nose bleeds, coughing and spasm of the vocal cords. These occur in less than one out of 100 people. Any effects are temporary and should not last more than a minute or two.
Are there any alternatives?
There is no other way for your doctor to gain this level of information.
Will I feel any pain?
The tube may feel a little uncomfortable or tickle, but it should not hurt. Sometimes, if your nose is particularly narrow, the tube may be slightly more uncomfortable. If this is the case, some local anaesthetic spray can be applied around the entrance to your nose. This numbs the area so you do not feel anything.
What happens after the procedure?
There is no recovery period or instructions that you need to follow directly after a nasendoscopy. You may get feedback at the time of the investigation from your doctor.
Other tests that may occur in your appointment with us are microsuction (cleaning the ear canal with suction under a microscope), a skin prick allergy test or a hearing test.
Please note that we are a teaching hospital, so medical students may be present for some appointments. If you do not wish to have them in the room please let the nurse or doctor know and the students will be asked to step outside.
After your appointment
You will either have a follow-up appointment arranged, be discharged or have an admission arranged. Scans or further tests may be needed before your follow-up appointment.
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