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Know The Symptoms, Causes, And Treatment Of Chronic Rhinosinusitis!

Written and reviewed by
Dr. Manni Hingorani 90% (35 ratings)
MS - ENT, MBBS
ENT Specialist, Delhi  •  17 years experience
Know The Symptoms, Causes, And Treatment Of Chronic Rhinosinusitis!

A condition that commonly affects young and middle-aged adults and lasts for at least 12 weeks despite treatment is chronic rhinosinusitis. The condition occurs when the cavities in close vicinity to the nasal passages become inflamed and swollen and can cause a disruption in the drainage that leads to mucus buildup, making the area around the eyes and face swollen.

Causes-
The disease can be caused by an infection, growth in the sinuses, or by a deviated nasal septum among others. The most common causes of the condition include,

  1. Deviated nasal septum: When the septum becomes crooked, it may hinder or even block the nasal passages.
  2. Nasal polyps: It refers to the growth of tissues in the nasal passage which can block the sinuses or the nasal passages.
  3. Respiratory tract infections: Infections in the respiratory tract which is commonly referred to as colds can inflame and thicken the sinus membranes and block the drainage of mucus.
  4. Hay fever: Inflammation that occurs alongside allergies may also block the sinuses.
  5. Allied medical conditions: If there is a complication of cystic fibrosis or HIV or gastroesophageal reflux disease or any other immune-related ailments, it may cause chronic rhinosinusitis.

Signs and symptoms to watch for-
There are four primary signs and symptoms of chronic rhinosinusitis of which at least two must be present with nasal inflammation for being diagnosed with the disease. These symptoms include,

  1. Thick and discolored discharge from the drainage down the back of the throat called postnasal drainage.
  2. Nasal obstruction along with difficulty in breathing through the nose.
  3. Tenderness, swelling, and pain in the eyes, nose, cheeks, or forehead.
  4. Reduced sense of taste or smell in adults and coughing in children.

Other symptoms of the disease can include an ache in the upper jaw, sore throat, earache, bad breath, nausea, and fatigue along with irritability. It is worthy of mention here that both chronic and acute rhinosinusitis have similar signs and symptoms, but acute sinusitis is a temporary infection which is often associated with a cough and cold.

Treating chronic sinusitis-
The most effective treatments for chronic sinusitis include saline nasal irrigation, nasal corticosteroids, oral or injected corticosteroids and aspirin desensitization treatment. Sometimes, antibiotics and immunotherapy are also opted for treating the condition. One must consult with an ENT specialist to treat the condition effectively.

Prevention-
It is important to avoid infections in the upper respiratory tract and manage your allergies well in order to prevent frequent attacks of chronic sinusitis. One should also avoid staying for long hours in polluted air and smoking and use a humidifier to add moisture to the air which can prevent sinusitis.

Though treatable, chronic sinusitis tends to stay for several weeks with symptoms causing discomfort. Hence, it is crucial to seek medical care when diagnosed, and it is also important to follow your doctor’s instructions so as to avoid recurring episodes.

In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions!

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