ENT Blog

By Dr. Christina M McAlpin
May 07, 2020
Category: Otolaryngology
Tags: Sleep Apnea  

Is your snoring so loud that it disrupts your household? Excessive snoring often signals a sleep disorder called sleep apnea. If you are concerned about your snoring, you could benefit from a consultation with otolaryngologist Dr. Christina McAlpin in her Los Angeles, CA, clinic.

Characteristics of sleep apnea

This sleep disorder affects 25 million American adults, finds the National Healthy Sleep Awareness Project. Plus, the problem is on the rise—most likely due to escalating obesity.

Here's how it happens. As a person with sleep apnea rests, the tissues at the back of the throat—tongue, uvula, and others—relax. Then, they block the passage of air. This causes snoring and repeated episodes of apnea or breathing cessation. Sound dangerous? It is, for the person is deprived of oxygen and constantly wakes up, gasping for air

This most common kind of sleep apnea is called OSA, or obstructive sleep apnea. Some individuals have central sleep apnea which involves poor communication between the lungs and nervous system. This is less common than OSA as is mixed sleep apnea, which combines features of OSA and CSA.

Long-term, sleep apnea leads to noticeable problems with daily function, such as fatigue, depression, sleepiness, memory fog, and poor concentration. Systemic health problems develop, too—conditions such as:

  • Hypertension
  • Sexual dysfunction
  • Dementia
  • Type-2 diabetes
  • Stroke
  • Cardiac arrhythmias

Do you have sleep apnea?

If you suspect you do, contact Dr. Christina McAlpin at her Los Angeles office. She can examine you and review your symptoms to make a diagnosis and treatment plan. She may recommend a monitored sleep study that measures your vital signs and breathing patterns during the night.

Treating sleep apnea

To manage sleep apnea symptoms, some people benefit from interventions such as:

  • Sleeping on one side (this is called positional therapy)
  • Losing weight
  • Avoiding sedatives and alcohol before bedtime because they relax the muscles of the throat
  • Smoking cessation
  • Taking decongestants if you suffer from nasal polyps

More invasive interventions include surgery to remove large tonsils and adenoids or adding stiffeners to the roof of the mouth to support it. People who suffer from seasonal allergies may benefit from decongestants.

In addition, you and your ENT doctor may investigate oral appliance therapy. These customized acrylic appliances keep the jaw in a forward position, and thus, open the airway and keep it patent during the night.

Another popular and effective therapy for persistent sleep apnea is CPAP. CPAP stands for Continuous Positive Airway Pressure. The patient wears a facial mask through which a bedside machine delivers a constant flow of air. The air keeps the back of the throat open, eliminating snoring and other sleep apnea symptoms. Some people benefit from a combination of oral appliance therapy and CPAP.

Time to see an ENT doctor?

Dr. Christina McAlpin will be happy to help you with your sleep apnea symptoms and management. Call her Los Angeles, CA, office today for more information: (213) 745-4060.

By Dr. Christina M McAlpin
March 25, 2020
Category: Otolaryngology
Tags: Body Contouring  

Ever wish that you could get rid of stubborn fat without undergoing surgery? Nonsurgical body contouring is perfect for you. This treatment eliminates stubborn areas of fat to effectively shape and contour your body.

Despite leading an active and healthy lifestyle, some patients still can't lose the unwanted fat in the stomach, waist, legs, arms, and buttocks. This is where nonsurgical body contouring comes in handy. Here at the practice of Dr. Christina McAlpin in Los Angeles, CA, we use this technique to blast unwanted fat and get you in the best shape of your life. To understand what body contouring can do for you, take a look at its benefits below.

Nonsurgical Body Contouring Targets Multiple Body Parts

If you need to get rid of stubborn fat in various areas of your body all at the same time, body contouring is the most convenient and cost-effective way to achieve this.

Nonsurgical Body Contouring is Completely Non-Invasive

Unlike liposuction and other surgical procedures that involve removing fat and even some of the skin, nonsurgical body contouring is very non-invasive. It doesn’t put any significant physical stress on your body and there’s no bleeding and anesthesia involved. This means that you won’t have to deal with the potential risks of post-surgery complications. These typically include infections, pain and discomfort, hypoglycemia, weight gain, nausea and vomiting, and gallstones.

Nonsurgical Body Contouring Is Ideal for Almost Everyone

For patients who are immunocompromised or have blood conditions, they are disqualified for major surgical procedures such as liposuction. Body contouring, however, could work for virtually anyone, no matter their age, shape, size, and weight. Do note though that the best candidates for the procedure are individuals that are close to their target weight and need to get rid of stubborn fat that doesn’t respond to exercise and diet. You can visit your doctor in Los Angeles, CA, to determine your eligibility for the body contouring.

Nonsurgical Body Contouring Offers Easier and Faster Recovery

Incisions and bruises associated with surgical procedures like liposuction could leave you bedridden and unable to go about your normal activities for several days to weeks. But since nonsurgical body contouring is non-invasive, you’ll only feel some discomfort on the treatment sites. It’s an extremely simple procedure that could give you remarkable and lasting results, provided that you live a healthy lifestyle to help maintain and maximize your results.

Want to Know More About Nonsurgical Body Contouring? Call Us

Contact the practice of Dr. Christina McAlpin here in Los Angeles, CA, by calling (213) 745-4060 to schedule your appointment.

By Dr. Christina M McAlpin
February 20, 2020
Category: Otolaryngology
Tags: Sleep Apnea  

Exhausted all day and restless all night? You could have sleep apnea?

Does your partner complain that you snore every night? If so, you might have a sleep disorder known as obstructive sleep apnea, a potentially deadly condition that your Los Angeles otolaryngologist, Dr. Christina McAlpin, can thankfully diagnose and help you treat.

What are the warning signs of sleep apnea?

Obviously the most classic symptom of sleep apnea is loud, chronic snoring. You may even wake up in the middle of the night gasping for air. Other symptoms include,

  • Wake up with a dry or sore throat
  • Severe daytime exhaustion and fatigue
  • Mental fog and poor concentration
  • Morning headaches
  • Irritability and mood swings
  • Decreased sex drive

Experiencing any of these symptoms? Then it’s probably time to schedule a sleep evaluation with Dr. McAlpin. Even if your snoring isn’t caused by sleep apnea, frequent snoring can also disrupt sleep. Our ENT doctor can help get your snoring under control, too.

What happens if I don’t treat sleep apnea?

Untreated sleep apnea won’t just cause you continual sleep problems or leave you banished to the cough forever, it can also cause some serious long-term health problems. Untreated sleep apnea has been linked to these chronic and serious issues:

  • Type 2 diabetes
  • Hypertension (high blood pressure)
  • Stroke
  • Heart attack
  • Irregular heartbeat
  • Depression and anxiety

Along with these major issues, sleep apnea can also lead to problems with work or school performance and increase the likelihood of accidents either on the road or at work.

How is sleep apnea treated?

Our ENT doctor may be able to determine that you have sleep apnea through a simple physical examination performed right in her Los Angeles office; however, sometimes she may need to refer patients to a sleep clinic for further testing. Once you’ve been diagnosed with sleep apnea, Dr. McAlpin can then discuss treatment options.

While there is no cure for sleep apnea, our team can help you manage your symptoms. The most common non-surgical way to treat sleep apnea is with CPAP treatment (continuous positive airway pressure), where a device is worn over the face to deliver pressurized air through the nose and mouth to keep airways open and free from obstructions while you sleep.

Other treatments for sleep apnea include oral appliance therapy, deviated septum repair, and other surgeries to correct abnormalities within the nose and throat that could be causing your symptoms.

Concerned? Give us a call

If you or someone you love is having trouble sleeping due to chronic snoring it’s time to turn to an ENT specialist in Los Angeles that can confirm whether you may have sleep apnea. The sooner you seek treatment the sooner you will finally discover what quality sleep feels like. Call our office today at (213) 745-4060.

By Dr. Christina M McAlpin
September 13, 2019
Category: Uncategorized
Tags: Untagged

Find out when sinus pain is warning you that there might be another issue that requires your attention.

Sinusitis is actually a pretty common problem. In fact, most people will deal with an acute sinus infection at some point during their lifetime. Of course, this condition is often nothing to write home about; however, there are certain instances in which sinus pain may be warning you of issues that may require treatment from an otolaryngologist. Find out when you should have your sinus pain evaluated by a medical professional from your ENT in Los Angeles, CA.

Not all sinus infections are created equal. Some can be due to a viral infection while others may be bacterial. A lot of the time people can’t tell the difference between the symptoms of a sinus infection and that of a common cold. Fortunately for them, the issue will usually go away on its own.

Of course, if you find these sinus issues sticking around for a couple of weeks or getting worse rather than better, it’s time to turn to an Los Angeles, CA ENT doctor who can get down to the bottom of these issues. Sinus infections lasting 12 weeks or more are considered chronic and will require medical care.

While more rare, it is possible for a sinus infection to develop some rather serious complications. By getting antibiotics from an ear, nose and throat doctor when necessary you can avoid these issues altogether.

One complication of a sinus infection is if it travels to the eyes. This can lead to redness and swelling around the eyes as well as blurry vision. If you have been experiencing signs of a sinus infection along with any eye symptoms it’s important that you seek treatment right away. Another rare complication is if the sinus infection spreads to the brain, which can lead to an abscess or meningitis.

Again, these situations are very unlikely to occur, but it’s important to be aware of these symptoms in case it should happen. Monitoring your symptoms is the best way to determine whether it’s time to see a medical professional.

Don’t let sinus pain make you feel miserable. Nip your discomfort in the bud and turn to your ENT specialist in Los Angeles, CA who will be able to create a treatment plan that will finally provide you with the much-needed relief you’ve been looking for.

By Dr. Christina M McAlpin's Team
September 13, 2019
Category: Uncategorized
Tags: Untagged

Welcome to the Blog of Dr. Christina M. McAlpin

Dr. Christina M. McAlpin would like to welcome you to our blog. Here you will find informative and useful postings about your health and our ENT practice.

At Dr. Christina M. McAlpin we believe that educated patients are better prepared to make decisions regarding their overall cosmetic health, ear, nose, and throat health, and overall wellbeing.  Our blog was designed to provide you with valuable health care information, the latest medical developments and health advice from our dedicated team in ENT medicine. 

Dr. Christina M. McAlpin hopes you find our blog to be a great resource for keeping up to date with proper health care and treatments.

We welcome all comments and questions.

-- Christina M. McAplin, MD & Team

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