If it seems like your cold has lasted forever and an ongoing stuffy nose or sinus pain makes you miserable, you may have sinusitis. Michael Jaindl, MD, at South Florida Ear, Nose and Throat in Lehigh Acres, Florida, has years of experience helping patients find relief by diagnosing the underlying source of the problem and providing customized treatment. Don’t keep suffering from sinusitis; call the office today.
Sinusitis is the result of inflamed and infected sinuses. Each sinus is lined with membranes that produce mucus. Normally, mucus leaves the sinus, going through a small opening and into your nasal passages.
When the mucus membranes become inflamed, the opening is blocked, and mucus builds up inside the sinus. As a result, an infection develops.
Allergies, sensitivities to things in the environment and viral infections such as the common cold are the most common causes of sinusitis. Nasal polyps, enlarged turbinates, and a deviated septum can also block mucus drainage and lead to sinusitis.
An acute case of sinusitis typically heals within two to four weeks. In some cases, the inflammation persists after the infection gets better, causing ongoing sinusitis. When your sinusitis lasts 12 weeks or longer, you have chronic sinusitis.
The classic symptoms of sinusitis include nasal congestion, discolored discharge from your nose, and pain or pressure around your sinuses. You may also experience:
Sinusitis from a viral infection may also give you a low-grade fever.
Your treatment is customized depending on whether your sinusitis is acute or chronic and its underlying cause. An acute case of sinusitis from a viral infection is treated with medications to relieve your symptoms while you wait for the infection to run its course. If you develop a bacterial infection, the team at South Florida Ear, Nose and Throat may prescribe antibiotics.
Treatment for sinusitis caused by allergies begins with allergy testing, followed by a plan to avoid your allergens, over-the-counter medications, and for some patients, immunotherapy. As sublingual drops reduce allergy symptoms, your sinusitis should improve.
If you have chronic sinusitis but medical treatment doesn’t reduce the inflammation, the South Florida Ear, Nose and Throat team may recommend balloon sinuplasty, depending on the severity and other factors.
Balloon sinuplasty is a minimally invasive endoscopic procedure that’s done in the office. Your doctor at South Florida Ear, Nose and Throat inserts a flexible balloon catheter through a nostril and guides it into the infected sinus. Once the catheter is in place, your doctor inflates a balloon in the opening, rinses the sinus, then deflates and removes the balloon.
While the balloon is inflated, it restructures the sinus passage, so it stays open after the balloon is removed. You regain normal sinus drainage and relief from sinusitis that is most often permanent.
To get treatment for your sinusitis and ongoing stuffy nose, call South Florida Ear, Nose and Throat today.