Sinusitis: A Common Problem
Sinusitis affects 37 million people each year, making it one of the most common health problems in the U.S. It is more prevalent than arthritis and hypertension and has a greater impact on quality of life than diabetes or congestive heart failure.
What is Sinusitis?
Sinusitis is an inflammation of the sinus lining most commonly caused by infections or blockages of the sinus opening. If the opening is closed, normal mucus drainage may not occur, which may lead to infection and inflammation of the sinuses.
Common symptoms include the following:
- Facial pain, pressure, congestion or fullness
- Nasal obstruction or blockage
- Discharge of discolored mucus from the nose
- Discolored post-nasal drainage
- Loss of the sense of smell
What are the Sinuses?
Sinuses are air-filled pockets in the areas surrounding the nose. There are four types of sinuses on either side of the face.
Each sinus has an opening through which mucus drains. Mucus drainage is a normal process that keeps the sinuses healthy.
Types of Sinusitis
Sinusitis is usually preceded by a cold, allergy attack or irritation from environmental pollutants. Often, the resulting symptoms, such as nasal pressure and congestion run their course in a few days. If symptoms persist, a bacterial infection or acute sinusitis may develop. If the condition occurs frequently or lasts three months or more, it may be chronic sinusitis.
Chronic Sinusitis Treatment
The most frequently used treatments for chronic sinusitis are medical therapies and/or conventional sinus surgery. Medical therapy treatment offers a choice between sprays, antibiotics, steroids, and others, while conventional sinus surgery offers the choice between conventional surgical devices and the novel Balloon Sinuplasty™ system of devices.
To schedule a consultation, call Riverside ENT/Hearing and Balance at 815-932-2541.