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Sinusitis – Overview

May 30, 2021


Sinusitis is really something we should split up into two categories. There's acute sinusitis, which is an infection, mostly a bacterial infection, sometimes a viral infection. And that lasts for anywhere up to about four weeks in a significant infection. That's treated with medical therapies, antibiotics, and topical treatments. Then there's an chronic inflammatory condition or chronic sinusitis. Chronic sinusitis is something that lasts more than 12 weeks. In that 4 to 12 week range, we call that subacute sinusitis. Two different diseases: acute sinusitis, sinus infection. Chronic sinusitis is an inflammatory condition. An inflammatory condition whereby the body or the lining of the nose responds to environmental triggers by causing significant inflammation inside the nose and sinuses. Sinusitis then further, the inflammatory sinusitis, can be split up into sinusitis with polyps and sinusitis without polyps. The polyps are a result of the chronic inflammation and the outpouching of the lining of the nose can form these polyps that can fill the nose and sinuses. Obviously the symptoms that patients will have with an acute sinusitis versus the inflammatory sinusitis, in the beginning may be similar. You may have pain or pressure in the face, around the eyes. May have runny nose, stuffy nose, post-nasal drip, malodorous discharge from the nose. All those things can be a sign of both an acute sinus infection and a chronic sinus infection. Patients may or may not have an associated allergic condition. So allergic rhinosinusitis.

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