Chronic Sinus Infections

Sinus infectionA chronic sinus infection can be much  subtle and linger for months. Signs of chronic sinusitis can include one or more of the following symptoms: stuffy nose, intermittent yellow or green nasal drainage (maybe only seen in the shower), occasional sinus area pressure or headache, bad breath, decreased sense of taste and smell, earaches, fatigue, and coughing, especially with lying down.

Allowing the sinuses to drain properly is the first step in curing sinusitis. Americans purchase more than $1.5 billion worth of over-the-counter sinus medications each year, but these remedies don’t work for everyone. Drug treatment involves a combination of nasal saline (see Sinus Wash post), antihistamines (for sneezing, itchy and watery symptoms), oral decongestants (over the counter nose spray decongestants can cause worsening congestion if used too often), and intranasal corticosteroids (preferred treatment, they do not have side effects found with oral steroids).

Chronic sinusitis may require antibiotics for 2-4 weeks to resolve. Your doctor at Windom Allergy may look into your nose with a fiberoptic scope or ask that you have a computed tomography (CT) scan of your sinusitis to prove that a chronic infection is present. Endoscopic sinus surgery, in resistant cases, is the treatment of last resort.

Posted in: