Sinuses are hollow cavities within our cheekbones, around our eyes and behind our nose. They contain mucus, which helps to warm, moisten and filter the air we breathe.
Sinusitis, or sinus infection, is an inflammation of the lining of the sinuses and nose that cause nasal congestion, facial pressure, cough and thick nasal discharge.
Acute sinusitis refers to sinusitis symptoms lasting less than four weeks. It usually begins as a common cold and symptoms often go away within 7- 10 days; however, in some individuals, a bacterial infection can develop.
Chronic sinusitis, also referred to as chronic rhinosinusitis, is often diagnosed when symptoms lasts for more than 12 consecutive weeks, a time to see a board-certified allergist for non surgical treatment.
People with allergic rhinitis or asthma are more likely to suffer from chronic sinusitis.
Watch for these symptoms
Chronic sinusitis can cause siginificant discomfort with cold-like symptoms:
- Nasal congestion, headache, facial pain or pressure
- Difficulty breathing through the nose
- Swelling around the eyes
- A thick yellow or greenish nasal discharge
- Postnasal drip with frequent throat clearing
- Reduced sense of smell or taste
- Bad breath
- Ear pain or fullness
- Jaw or teeth pain
- Sore throat
- Disturbed sleep
An accurate diagnosis is vital to recovery
Chronic sinusitis can be difficult to diagnose. Sinusitis can resemble cold-like symptoms and often people suffer for months before they seek medical attention. Our board-certified allergists have the specialized training and experience to accurately diagnose and treat this disease. A complete medical history and detailed physical examination is conducted during your office visit. The following tests are utilized in certain cases:
- Allergy skin scratch tests– If sinusitis is suspected to be related to allergies
- Rhinoscopy – A flexible and think tube with a fiberoptic light is inserted into your nose to visualize the nasal and sinus passages
- Nasal & sinus cultures – If sinusitis has failed to respond to treatment
- Sinus CT – imaging of the sinuses to verify infection or to look for structural abnormalities
Treatment of the underlying cause through non-surgical methods
After identifying the cause of your problem, a personalized sinusitis treatment plan is outlined especially for you. The following nonsurgical treatment may be recommended:
- Antibiotics to eliminate underlying bacterial infection
- Intranasal or oral anti-inflammatory medications
- Antihistamines or decongestants
- Allergen Immunotherapy (allergy shots), if the condition is related to allergies
- Treatment for immunodeficiency disease, if the condition is related to immune system disorder
The Allergy Group – Friendly, capable and experienced
Our team of physicians and healthcare professionals at The Allergy Group are highly experienced and trained to provide you with the best sinusitis care and help you breathe better. We are committed to your personal healthcare.