Sinusitis Explained

The sinuses are a group of hollow spaces that surround the nose and above the eyes. Symptoms of a sinus infection include cloudy or colored runny nose with nasal blockage, and facial pain/pressure. Other symptoms include fever, headache, cough, sore throat, loss of energy, reduced sense of smell, tooth pain and ear fullness.

Sinus infections can be caused by viruses(common), bacteria, or fungi(uncommon). A viral sinus infection improves within 10 days and does not get worse. Bacterial sinus infections may be acute(short course), recurrent(repeated), or chronic(long lasting). A viral infection does NOT get better from taking antibiotics.

Treatment for viral sinus infections is directed at symptom relief. Pain relievers, decongestants, nasal steroid sprays, and nasal saline rinses may be helpful. Antibiotics are not helpful, and may cause allergic reactions, diarrhea, and development of resistant organisms.

Treatment for bacterial sinus infections is with antibiotics. Symptoms may resolve more quickly if decongestants, nasal steroid sprays, nasal saline rinses, pain relievers, and possibly oral steroids(prednisone) are used.

Treatment for chronic sinus infections may include prolonged antibiotic therapy, continued use of nasal steroid sprays, and regular use of nasal saline rinses. An allergy evaluation may be recommended. A CT scan confirms the diagnosis of chronic sinusitis.

We treat sinusitis at Great Neck ENT

Dr. Werber and Dr. Haunss are trained in the latest techniques for diagnosing and treating sinus infections.

 

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