Chronic Sinusitis: Information, Treatment and Care

Chronic Sinus Treatment

What Is Sinusitis?

Chronic sinusitis affects more than 14.6 percent of people in the United States. Because sinusitis is characterized by inflammation of the mucous membrane lining the sinus cavities, antibiotics are the most common treatment — they target the symptom-causing chronic infections.

Typically, sinus cavities are filled with air, letting the mucus created there drain into the nasal passages. However, if the mucous membranes become inflamed and drainage pathways are blocked, mucus can become trapped in the sinuses and infection can occur. Sinusitis can be viral, bacterial or fungal, each requiring a different type of treatment.

Sinusitis can be prevented by staying hydrated and properly managing allergies with the use of over-the-counter as well as prescription oral antihistamines or steroid nasal spray. Patients suffering from nasal issues might also use daily saline irrigations. When traveling by air, use a nasal spray decongestant before take-off, preventing blockage of the sinuses to allow mucus to drain.

Symptoms of Chronic Sinusitis

You may be suffering from chronic sinusitis (a sinus infection) if you’re regularly experiencing one or more of these symptoms:

  • Reduced or absent sense of smell
  • Nasal blockage
  • Cloudy or discolored nasal drainage
  • Fatigue
  • Facial or dental pain and/or pressure
  • Ear fullness
  • Fever
  • Cough

Chronic Sinusitis Diagnosis and Treatments

Our ENT treatment team can help you find chronic sinusitis relief. Our team will base your sinusitis diagnosis on your symptoms, a physical examination and an endoscope examination. While treatments will vary according to your situation, below are a few ways we treat patients suffering from sinusitis:

  • Antibiotics. Used to address bacterial infections, common examples of an antibiotic include Amoxicillin, Augmentin® and Levaquin®.
  • Steroid Nasal Sprays. As viral sinusitis is not affected by antibiotics, nasal steroids are often deployed to shorten the length of an infection. It may also be combined with antibiotics to encourage swift recovery.
  • Intravenous Antifungal medications. Very rarely used for fungal infections that affect those with weakened immune systems related to chemotherapy for cancer or severe, poorly controlled diabetes.

What Does an ENT do for Chronic Sinusitis?

When nonsurgical treatments aren’t enough, an ENT surgeon will be able to step in and provide surgical support for your chronic sinus troubles. Balloon sinuplasty, for example, is a common in-office procedure that can be performed with local anesthesia where a balloon is inflated in the narrow channels between the sinuses and nasal cavities, widening them to allow for appropriate drainage. Learn more about Renew’s surgical nose and sinus specialties at the link below.

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