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Otolaryngology (ENT) in Lompoc

People You Know, Care You Trust

Many people refer to doctors who practice otolaryngology (otolaryngologists) as “ENTs,” an acronym that stands for ear, nose, and throat.

At Lompoc Valley Medical Center, our otolaryngology team provides care for our patients experiencing problems related to their ears, nose, throat, head, and neck.

For services regarding ENT in Lompoc, contact us today at (805) 737-3300.

What Does an Otolaryngologist Do?

Because of the large range of anatomy that ENT doctors cover, our otolaryngologists treat a wide variety of patients, from those expressing audiology concerns to those with allergic or immunologic issues.

According to the National Library of Medicine, an otolaryngologist sees three top conditions: otitis media (middle ear infections), chronic sinusitis (chronic sinus infections), and impacted cerumen (ear wax impactions). Additional conditions your ENT doctor may treat include:

  • Eardrum perforations
  • Hearing loss
  • Swimmer’s ear
  • Tinnitus (ringing in the ears)
  • Dizziness
  • Nosebleeds
  • Sleep apnea
  • Cleft lips and cleft palates
  • Neck lumps
  • Recurrent tonsillitis
  • Hoarseness
  • Mouth sores
  • Swallowing disorders
  • Thyroid disorders
  • Salivary problems
  • Temporomandibular joint (TMJ) dysfunction

At Lompoc Valley Medical Center, we also treat conditions that may affect multiple parts of the otolaryngological system, such as allergies, foreign body impactions, and Bell’s Palsy.

When to See an Otolaryngologist

Otolaryngologists are qualified to see patients of all ages. The most common patients who visit an otolaryngologist are aged between 45 and 64; followed by patients younger than age 20. Additionally, if you smoke tobacco, you may be more likely to develop a problem requiring an ENT doctor's care.

You should consult with one of our Lompoc ENT specialists if you have been noticing any concerns surrounding the ears, nose, throat, head, or neck. You should also consult with an otolaryngologist if you have previously been diagnosed with a condition that seems to worsen or progress to other areas.

Many conditions managed by an ENT doctor can be diagnosed clinically, which means that the otolaryngologist can tell what is going on by examining you and conducting a thorough medical history assessment. However, sometimes the doctor needs more tools to make an accurate diagnosis for treatment.

Otolaryngologists can use a tool called an otoscope to look into your ears, or an endoscope to look into your nasal and sinus passages. Sometimes, an imaging study (such as a CT or MRI) can be useful in making a proper diagnosis. Our Lompoc imaging services are state-of-the-art, meaning you’ll receive a precise diagnosis before beginning your treatment plan.

If you have a suspicious sore or lump, you may need a biopsy, which includes removing a small tissue sample for examination under a microscope. Once the sample has been obtained, your doctor may also recommend obtaining a “culture” to see what kind of microbes may be causing a certain condition. If you are experiencing problems with your thyroid, or recurrent infections, an ENT doctor might also suggest blood work. These diagnostic procedures will be dependent upon your symptoms and medical history.

Otolaryngology and Surgery

Otolaryngologists can perform plastic and reconstructive surgery, nasal surgeries, sinus surgeries, and thyroid surgeries. They can also help surgically remove and treat cancers, as well as placing cochlear implants. Because the head and neck anatomy is complex, many otolaryngologists perform microsurgery using specialized tools such as endoscopes (long, thin, flexible tubes with cameras attached), in order to visualize the problem areas fully—ensuring greater accuracy and precision in our diagnosis and treatment.

Since an ENT doctor is an expert in multiple areas of focus, they can diagnose, treat, and prevent disorders involving the ears, upper respiratory system, upper digestive system, face, jaws, and head and neck. If your doctor recommends surgery, you will receive both pre-operative and post-operative care instructions to recover and heal as quickly as possible.

Many otolaryngologists will collaborate with other medical providers, such as audiologists, speech-language pathologists, physician assistants, or nurse practitioners for a comprehensive and multidisciplinary approach to your care.

Here for Whatever You Need

At Lompoc Valley Medical Center, we are honored to partner with a team of excellent and compassionate otolaryngologists. Our ENT doctors work hard to provide comprehensive care for their patients, from the neck up.

If you think you may have a problem related to the ears, nose, throat, head, or neck, reach out to receive a diagnosis and treatment from our primary care team.
To learn more about our Lompoc ENT treatments, contact us at (805) 737-3300 today.

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