Clarifix giving relief to people with allergies

LINCOLN, Neb. (KOLN) - 2019 has been particularly bad for people who suffer from allergies. Now, a Lincoln doctor is one of only a few in Nebraska to offer a procedure to help improve allergy symptoms.

This is the Clarifix tool used during an in office procedure to help people who suffer from allergies.

The minimally invasive procedure is called Clarifix.

Anissa Rasmussen had the procedure done in the end of February, after dealing with chronic allergies since her 20's.

"Stuffy nose is my main and then I've also had within the last year dripping nose anytime I bent over," said Rasmussen.

The Lincoln woman said she'd tried everything from nose sprays to sinus rinses and allergy medication. It wasn't until a friend told her about Dr. Aaron Robinson at CHI Health. Through Dr. Robinson she learned about Clarifix.

"It's a cryo-ablation or freezing of the nerves inside the nose to help open up the nose and help reduce the amount of swelling and running and nasal dripping," said Dr. Robinson.

The procedure is done in the office and doesn't need any sedation.

"It's minimally invasive and there's really no major side effects," Dr. Robinson added.

Dr. Robinson has been doing the internasal freezing for about a year and said he's had good results, so far, with his patients.

"There's a lot of people who come in with just these terrible stories of having to go through a box of Kleenex everyday because their nose is always running. Oor they're always congested and they've been on nasal sprays for years and years with no improvement. Or they can't sleep at night because their nose is so congested. In those patients where they meet the criteria to have this procedure, they have awesome results, people come in and say you've changed my life, I don't have to go through a box of Kleenex everyday."

He said the best candidates are people who have already tried conservative therapies, like allergy medicine and nose sprays.

"Somebody who has nasal congestion, runny nose, constant nasal drip, constant drip like when you're eating or maybe you're going through a box of Kleenex because you're always wiping your nose and you have tried nasal sprays and failed them."

The procedure takes just a few minutes and Dr. Robinson is guided by a small camera inside the nose.

"Look at the spot where I'm going to do the treatment, where the nerves come out. Place the device along with the camera, put the head of the device next to the nerves, turn it on and it releases the gas. It freezes those nerves for 30 seconds, then I remove that probe and do it on the other side."

He said about half the patients who've had Clarifix done, also have a second procedure at the same time. In Rasmussen's case she had Latera, where Dr. Robinson placed two small stents on either side of her nose.

"Stays there for about a year and a half, and that whole time it's dissolving. It's like a dissolvable suture," said Robinson. "We put that in there and from day one it starts to get grown over by scar tissue and then over time it starts to dissolve and that area where it was sitting is replaced by scar tissue that's more stiff than the surrounding tissue."

This procedure Dr. Robinson said is for people who have a collapsed nose, "so when they breathe in their nostrils pinch down and block off the air flow."

Anissa is now six months out from both procedures and said her nose has completely stopped dripping. She said, "This has been the best summer in years, where my nose isn't stuffy on or off throughout summer and my allergies seem to better and I can do more outdoor yard work, without paying for it later."

Her advice, if your allergies make you miserable go see Dr. Robinson.